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HARRIET WARD FOOTE HAWLEY 



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This book is prepared chiefly for the nieces and nephews of 
Harriet Foote Hawley, but also for those of us who remember 
her. 

Parts of it are written by a devoted friend, Miss Maria Hunt- 
ington, and parts by a younger sister, Miss Kate Foote. 

Of course, it is not possible to make clear the whole nobility 
and strength of her character. To have nursed the wounded in 
a city filthy and smitten with pestilence, was pi<5luresquely 
heroic ; but to the homely every-day heroisms which made the 
other possible, one cannot do justice. The persistent self- 
denials, the making over of old clothes, in order to be able to 
give generously, were small means to great ends. To pra(5tice 
little unending economies and not belittle the soul thereby, 
requires a character of as fine and spirited a temper as a Damas- 
cus blade, which can cut a hair or pierce steel. "She was one 
of the most Christian souls that ever sojourned among us." 



Harriet Ward Foote was the oldest of ten 
children, born in Guilford, Connecticut, on a 
New England farm — one of those rocky hill- 
sides of which the natives say a man must 
own two hundred acres at least, or he will 
starve to death. 

• Her position as oldest of the flock developed 
early her strong will and adlive brain, and 
made her loss to the rest of her family some- 
thing like the death of a mother. She was 
motherly to three young brothers who were 
her next cares, she welcomed the birth of a 
sister later on with great joy and immediately 
began taking care of her, so completely and 
thoroughly that the child was not always 
clear in the early part of her life as to which 
was her mother and which her sister. 

At the little district school where she went 
with her brothers there was the " bully," the 
boy who leads in all the naughty things, who 
is a terror to the smaller children and is re- 
garded with mingled admiration and dislike 



by the other boys according to caprice of favor 
or hatred. One day during the noon recess 
the other big boys turned upon this fellow for 
something he had done, banded against him 
and when he chased them all into the school 
house, they locked the door against him and 
would not let him in. The fellow had a real- 
ly fiendish temper and it was aroused now to 
its fullest height and he battered on the door, 
shrieking language which curdled their blood 
and which made even the boys recoil and 
gather in a group at the back of the room. 
Harriet was one of the older girls, nearly 
fourteen. She said, " this has gone on long 
enough," and catching hold of one of the little 
girls, her sister, about four years old, she un- 
fastened the door and the raging creature out- 
side found himself confronted by a girl and a 
baby. Her calmness, the contrast to what he 
had expected when he heard the key in the 
door, quieted him in a moment, and when she 
said : '^ you may come in," he came. A few 
minutes later when the teacher arrived there 
were the marks of a fearful pounding upon 



the door, and a feeling as if the air vibrated 
still from spent thunder, but there was appar- 
ent calm, and I doubt if he ever knew what a 
quarrel there had been. 

In the spring of 1854 she met Joseph R. 
Hawley in Hartford at the house of Mr. John 
Hooker. The acquaintance terminated in an 
engagement, and in the winter of 1855, Decem- 
ber 25th, they were married at her home in 
Guilford. He had begun the profession of 
the law but became one of the editors of the 
Hartford Evening Press soon after he was 
married. They lived quietly and simply in 
Hartford until the breaking out of the war. 
She warmly approved of his enlisting, as he 
did, among the first in Hartford. He was or- 
dered to New Haven to the encampment there, 
and she did all the work of closing up their 
housekeeping, renting their modest house and 
preparing to go home to Guilford. She wrote 
to him in New Haven : 

' ' I can never be sorry you have taken the step you 
have. Terrible as it is I am glad I can do something. 
If I could only go too I should be happy." 

7 



Writing of a brother just enlisted, she said : 

* ' He is the best and the dearest, but I beHeve in no 
half sacrifice. Give God the best and all : we women 
have to do the giving though we cannot do the fight- 
ing." 

Captain Hawley's first enlistment was for 
three months, which was thought to be long 
enough for the settlement of the trouble be- 
tween the Northern and Southern States. But 
both sides were made of strong stuff, and it 
took longer to decide that there should be no 
break in the links that held together the Fed- 
eral Union, and also to wipe out the moral 
stain of African slavery in a great republic. 

She wrote of the re-enlistment for three 
years, which greater foresight now demanded : 

' ' I am glad that you intend to fight out the war. 
It is what I supposed you would do. A good captain, 
such as I know you must be by this time, must be able 
to do more good there than here." 

Many extracts from her letters to her hus- 
band while he was south, follow. 

' ' You have come back to me safely once, so I think 
you may again. The7i I was sure you would not and 



I could suffer but little more in your ac?tual death than 
I did then. It was not that I felt any less sure of 
God's loving care for you than I do now, but that I 
could not tell what might seem best to Him. Neither 
can I now, but my stronger health gives me more hope 
for happiness in this life, and in any event I have your 
mother and father to take care of and love, beside my 
own. I can't tell you, darling, how those few words 
on the edge of your last long loving letter affected me. 
But you did not really think you needed to remind me 
to care for your parents and that they are ' ' growing 
old" did 3^ou? If you were killed I .should make a 
home for them somewhere — wherever they might 
choose, and live with them all the rest of their lives, 
for I know they love me and I could make them 
happy. ' ' 

' ' You were right in saying in one of your letters 
that I was 'with you constantly.' It is true and in 
no ordinary sense of the words. It seems sometimes 
as if I were with you even as the spirits of the dead 
are, I believe, constantly about us." 

At this time Fremont, whom the North 
had trusted enthtisiasticall}^, had shown him- 
self both incapable and unwise and had been 
superseded by Halleck in command in Mis- 
souri. He had forbidden all fugitive slaves 



coming into his camps. Cameron had made 
a discouraging and disheartening speech in 
New York — and she writes : 

' ' I pray for patience. God will set the black man 
right sometime, and I know this nation will never be 
any better or greater than it is now, if it does not do 
its part in the work." 

' ' God made of one blood all the nations upon earth. 
That was at the beginning and in the old world. I 
believe that at the end and in this new world all 
nations will yet be mingled in one blood — make one 
nation of nobler men and women than this earth has 
yet seen." 

"I'm growing a little discouraged about the war in 
spite of Charleston's being burnt up — if it is. It 
does seem as if the government never would take the 
right stand and I'm afraid all these bills which are 
being brought into Congress, good as they are, won't 
amount to anything. However, God reigns. Why 
all this fuss is made about providing a place for the 
Negroes to go to — colonization and nobody knows 
what not — I can't see. There has been room enough 
for them in the country I believe and for some more 
judging from the constant efforts of the South to im- 
port more, and though Freedom is said to make a man 
better I never heard of its making him an}^ larger. 
They have been able to earn their own and their mas- 

10 



ter'vS living as chattels, they can hardly do less as men. 
If all the wiseacres in the country had known, forty 
years ago, how many thousand ignorant Irish and 
Germans were coming to this country they would 
have been just as clamorous for * bills ' and * laws ' to 
protedl themselves and to provide a place for these 
people to settle in. Fortunately, they did not know 
it, and the Irish and Germans have been left to them- 
selves and have taken care of themselves and done a 
great deal of hard work for us. The slaves are not, 
as a body, more ignorant or wicked than these others, 
and why our government, now that it has the power, 
can't do its simple duty and let the Negroes take care 
of themselves after they are freed, I can't see." 

In the winter of 1861 her husband, stationed 
at Port Royal, had written that it might be 
possible for her to join him : other officers 
were to have their wives go out to them. She 
answered : 

"If the generals do not want women 'round, as I 
should think might be very likely, I can give it up 
entirely; I ivoii' t come merely to please myself; it 
won't be half as hard to give it up as to let 3^ou go at 
first — nor half as hard as to feel that I had coaxed you 
against your better judgment, and that I am a care to 
you there instead of a comfort." 
11 



The regiment went into active service and 
she did not go. In early 1862, she wrote : 

"You must not think I'm grumbling when the 
longing, homesick feeling will break out sometimes. 
I know you feel it at times ; and I do not know how 
you would bear it if you had not better work than I 
have. I do not mean to undervalue women's work. 
You know I like to sew and I am glad to do anything, 
if it is only making a collar, to make the girls and 
mother happier, but I can't help feeling when I'm 
doing these things that I throw a great deal more 
strength and energy into the work than things are 
worth. I must work, and work steadil}^ and hard, I 
can't live without it, but I should like to feel that I 
was doing some real good to somebody. If I were 
sure of my health I would ' compass Heaven and 
Earth ' to get some situation as nurse somewhere for 
the poor fellows who are spending their lives for us. 
It makes me sick to think that I can do nothing ; to 
think how we are going quietly on here at home when 
our best and bravest are suffering and dying, — and 
the good cause goes on so slowly. I am not sure that 
I can bear it much longer — but I suppose I shall not 
do anything more desperate than knit a few" pairs of 
stockings for the volunteers." 



12 



She wrote of a ledlure given by Rev. H. W. 
Beecher in Hartford in January, 1862, — it was 
a stormy night and a small audience. 

** I never heard him speak so well, so solemnly and 
earnestly. Of course the subjecft was the times — ' Our 
Past and Future,' and his condensation of the whole 
subjedl of slavery, its history, its introducftion by suf- 
ferance into the Constitution, its influence, its silent 
and deadl}' revolution by co7istrit5lion of all our laWvS — 
till at the last Presidential election the culminating 
point was reached and an external and visible revolu- 
tion either by the North or by the South became in- 
evitable — was fine. I wish every soldier in our army 
could hear it." 

March 12, 1862. "By the next week you will be 
at work on Fort Pulaski I suppose. Your last letter 
was intensely interesting, but it amused me to see you 
scold father and ' all your northern correspondents, ' 
for being low-spirited and declare that you had never 
been happier in your life than since November 7th ; 
when your letter before that had been so terribly blue 
— the most so of anything I had read in a great while. 
The fact is, you're pretty much like the rest of the 
world. Every body loses hope a little sometimes, 
only one-half the world [like you] as soon as it is 
over declares it is no such thing, and they always 
knew everything would turn out right. The other 

13 



half won't own that they feel any better when it is all 
over and ' know things are gomg to be very bad.' " 
March 19, 1862. " Our vicflories are coming along 
pretty fast now : Island No. 10, and Newbem yester- 
day. We are getting to think the papers very stupid 
when there is no vidlory." 

This winter she was in especially miserable 
health but she says : 

' ' Do not be anxious about me, I take care of myself 
for your sake. You may have a healthy wife when 
you come home !" 

''I'm so sick of the newspaper's 'scold' that I'm 
threatening getting up an Anti-Grumbling Society." 

April 15, 1862. "I'm making up my mind pretty 
decidedly that you won't be killed in this war, but 
will come home to a bigger fight here. There will be 
a thousand times more need of you here a year hence 
than there has been anywhere yet. I believe the 
Lord means to keep you in the world and get a good 
deal of solid work out of you." "Thank God that 
you are an honest man. I'd starve in rags or keep an 
' Irish boarding house ' sooner than that you should 
buy place or power by giving up one iota of principle. 
What folly it seems to care for anything but the right. 
This life seems such a short time to do even our duty 
in." 

14 



April 17, 1862. [Mr. Hawley, now Col. of the 7th 
Conn. Vols, had been on Tybee Island, besieging 
Fort Pulaski.] "Reliable news at last. The bom- 
bardment was commenced on the lotli ; you made two 
breaches in the wall, shot down the rebel rag, etc., 
and the Seventh Connecticut took possession of the 
fort that night. Only one man killed and two 
wounded on our side. Thank God that this long 
anxiety is over. It is like waking from a weary 
dream. Thank God for all such times of comparative 
rest and relief. Hurrah ! I wanted to cheer on the 
spot. How I wish I could share all your feelings 
and thoughts those strange two days and nights ! 
Especially in taking possession of the fort ! ' ' 

April 20, 1862. " You say in one of your last [and 
you spoke of the same thing when you were home] 
that you ' feel it safest to accustom yourself to an 
ever present idea that we may not meet again. ' Is that 
the wisest way ? Is not that keeping yourself in an 
unnecessarily depressing atmosphere ? Is it not really 
a great deal better for us both to be persistently hopeful 
about everything ? It vSeems so to me, that this feel- 
ing that we may never meet again in life will come of 
itself quite as often as is best and that we ought to 
encourage ourselves and each other to look forward to 
a happier life in this world than we have ever known 
yet. I think we should be, either of us, strong 
enough to bear whatever our Father ma}^ lay upon 

15 



us ; meantime I cannot but think that such a hope 
is a better atmosphere for our souls than such a de- 
spair. ' ' 

May 14, 1862. "The victories are coming fast; 
though it is hard to lose the Gosport Navy Yard and 
the Merrimac too. Merely the loss of money in this 
war is something terrible ; but strong arms can soon 
make up that ; we have not lost books and rare works 
of art which cannot be replaced. For the lives — God 
keeps count of those given for justice — for the Right. ' ' 

June ist, 1862. "Banks' defeat and retreat seem 
to me to have been exaggerated. The 5th Connec- 
ticut has suffered terribly. Well, my hope doesn't 
fail, and if it did, my courage and faith would not. 
But isn't it strange to look back and think of our 
quiet life together two years ago. I used to won- 
der how people could live so near a volcano as they 
do about Vesuvius, but it is just what we did, j^et we 
are only rightly punished by this eruption." 

June 15, 1862. [Her familj^ of brothers and sisters, 
six in number were all sick and she was helping 
nurse them.] "It is wonderful comfort to find my- 
vSelf of use. It is about the greatest comfort the world 
affords, for Love is not of this world, and O thank 
God for that — that won't end with this life but grow 
stronger and purer forever." 

June 19, 1862. [News had been received that Mr. 
Hawley was ordered in front of Charleston.] ' ' I don't 

16 



know of anything which would do your soul more 
good than to have a chance at Fort Sumter. In all 
the operations of the war I think that is the one I 
should choose to have a part in, so I am glad for you, 
and I envy you. If it were not so sweet to be your 
wife I should wish I had been your brother. — I'd a 
great deal rather be you than me. But O you cannot 
imagine the devouring anxiety with which I watch 
and wait, I dare not think — I cannot speak of it, my 
only resource is work. I pray for you as I never did 
for myself. I pray for you with tears ; not for my 
part of you, but for God's part." 

July 3rd, 1862. " News has just come that Mc- 
Clellan has been defeated after five days hard fighting. 
Things look black enough. I am glad the President 
has called for three hundred thousand more men ; I 
wish I could be one of them. The more battles we 
lose the better for the slaves. I do not believe we 
shall ever conquer till we proclaim emancipation ; and 
yet I suppose there are people in the world who think 
President I^incoln knows more than Mrs. Hawley ! 
But I suppose it is not impertinent of me to say that I 
agree with Sumner." 

"I can't help believing that McClellan has been 
defeated — it takes a good deal of faith in God to bear 
it. And it seems as if the men had been butchered 
here almost as badly as 5^our poor boys were on 
James' Island." 
ir 



July 13, 1862. [She had been to see some of the 
Seventh Connecticut boys who had been brought to 
the New Haven hospital bj^ the surgeon of the regi- 
ment.] "It is glorious to see men suffering so and 
yet so perfectly patient and cheerful. The one who 
had lost his eye seemed to mind it no more than if it 
had been an old glove, only that it would prevent his 
going back, as it was the right eye. Howell seemed 
to be suffering a good deal, though able to talk. The 
inflammation in his wound has not subsided suf- 
ficiently to allow the extraction of the ball. But 
Ward looked the worst : his face very much swollen 
and very painful ; he looked very sick indeed, yet he 
talked more about you and Dr. Bacon than about 
himself. It was ver}^ touching to hear them speak so 
earnestly and affectionately of you." 

July 19, 1862. "Thank God for the good this 
war brings out in the hearts of men. I think the 
noblest sight I ever saw was those poor boj^s of yours 
in the Hospital. They had got over all the boyish or 
false enthusiasm they might have had at first — they 
were men— come home to lie on hard pallets and suffer 
terrible pain and then get up and go their waj^s 
maimed for life — yet they were not onlj^ calm and 
patient, but cheerful and talked much more about 
their colonel than about themselves and their suf- 
ferings, and only regretted that they could not go 
back again." 

18 



July 20, 1862. "It is rumored that Halleck is to 
be made Commander-in-Chief. I cannot help think- 
ing and wondering what result. This is the darkest 
day we've seen yet since the war began, but it seems 
to me that it must grow darker. Specie — at least 
silver money, costs twenty cents on the dollar, gold 
very nearly as much, and soon it seems to me there 
must be great financial distress. Thank God the 
crops are coming in well, so not many will starve, 
though many may suffer. And in the wonderful 
tropical growth of human souls in the fierce heat of 
war, the good still grows faster than the evil, and 
men will give to the poor and suffering as they never 
have before ; — so thank God for this too." 

* * I know now what ' taking no thought of the mor- 
row ' means I think ; nothing in my future life seems 
of much importance now. As long as God lets me 
live on the earth I shall find enough to do, and as 
long as I pray to Him he will help me do it, and 
that's all there is of life — and so ' why mourn we — 
why make we much ado. ' ' ' 

She joined her husband in the South in 
November, 1862. 



19 



During her army life I was with her and 
profited by her coolness, her promptness, her 
presence of mind which never failed her. 

We were at Beaufort, S. C. It was an army 
post with soldiers everywhere ; and rations, 
and all the necessaries of life were to be had, 
— if you could get them. We were quartered 
in one of the deserted houses of the town, with 
little furniture. There were three chairs, 
which we carried from the parlor to the dining 
room at meal times and if we had a guest one 
of us sat on a washstand turned on its side. 
In the parlor was a settee and a small stand by 
way of furniture ; the muslin curtains and a 
bracket and vase Ve had brought ourselves. In 
one of the back rooms was a mahogany side- 
board, the panels smashed in by marauding 
negroes in the hours between the time when 
the white people fled from Beaufort and the 
Yankee soldiers marched in. One morning I 
had accidentally scalded myself frightfully 

80 



with a pot of boiling chocolate, and had 
been laid on the settee in the parlor in the 
first agonies which come from such an injury. 
There was no fire and what was worse, no 
wood, and a South Carolina winter has cold 
days. Harriet glanced at the empty fire place 
and went out. A few moments later, she came 
in, her arms filled with pickets from the fence 
and pieces of the mahogany sideboard. She 
had left me groaning in anguish, but when 
she came back thus laden, I forgot my pain 
and laughed. She looked at me in amazed 
incomprehension. She thought only of the 
necessity of a fire, until I gasped out, '' the 
Colonel's wife — burning up the front fence,'' 
and then she laughed with me. That was a 
good fire. 

We acquired a little more furniture by the 
good will of the quartermaster, to whom all 
the furniture found in the dismantled houses 
had been turned over, and who disbursed the 
articles to officers, as impartially as he could. 
Sometimes we were lucky enough to find a 
chair with tarnished gilding and soiled cover 

21 



in a negro house, plundered no doubt, though 
impossible to prove it ; if the negro was will- 
ing to sell it, there was joy in our hearts such 
as well furnished people at home could not 
know. We had acquired in this way, several 
chairs and a table large enough to seat eight. 
A friend in a cavalry company shot a wild 
turkey which he presented to us, and General 
Terry, the former colonel of the 7th Regiment, 
came up from Hilton Head to attend a court- 
martial at Beaufort. The daring thought en- 
tered Harriet's mind of giving a dinner party. 
We counted our plates, we counted our knives 
and forks and the chairs and looked at the 
turkey, a beautiful bird with bronzed plumage 
and ten pounds in weight. '^ We will do it," 
said Harriet — we did. That is, she did. She 
wrestled with an incompetent cook, a planta- 
tion hand, who knew how to boil rice and 
nothing more. The turkey was so large that 
she also asked the Rev. Dr. and Mrs. Peck, 
missionaries living near us, and situated much 
as we were. The knives, however, we could 
not multiply ; if we had nine people there 

22 



could be no butter knife, neither any for Har- 
riet herself. '^ Never mind me," said she, '' I'll 
get along somehow." 

All went on smoothly. Dr. Peck, white 
haired and saintly looking asked a stately 
blessing, over such a civilized looking table 
that we forgot we were in South Carolina in 
war times. General Terry carved the turkey, 
and there was a little pause after we were all 
helped, pardonable under the circumstances ; 
I think we were all enjoying the sense of a 
warm delicious meal served with the adjuncts 
of civilization for the first time after a long 
period of soldier and camp life. In this pause 
Harriet suddenly put out a large buck handled 
jack knife to cut a piece of butter for herself. 
It was a sharp contrast to the elegance which 
had prevailed. Harriet was not disconcerted. 

'^ Should I give up a dinner party for a 
mere knife — a thousand times no — not while 
Joe had a jack knife like that." 

The housekeeping was an amusing part of 
living in the Department of the South always. 
We had army rations, salt beef, pork, beans, 

33 



hard bread, molasses and vinegar, bread from 
the post bakery, and fresh beef when a supply 
steamer came down from the north bringing 
beeves. For six weeks after we first got there 
no steamer came from the north, so that we 
had neither news nor beef, and we wondered 
if the Confederate pirates had captured and 
sunk our supplies. Besides the things men- 
tioned above, we could usually get sweet pota- 
toes and rice from the negroes, who were 
always glad to exchange for pork and salt 
beef. It made the daily routine of house- 
keeping a sort of adventurous business, liable 
to episodes. I give incidents as the under 
current which had to go on at a military post 
where the bugle call and the roll of the drum 
were the most familiar sounds and the air was 
full of the excitement that the adlive presence 
of war always brings. 

" It was dat sharp dis mawnin' I wore my 
shawl," said the woman we had for a cook 
after the man had proved himself an amiable 
failure. Harriet said nothing, but before the 
woman went away at night, she examined the 

24 



shawl. Hidden away in its folds was a little 
parcel of tea, and a package of sugar scraped 
from our supplies. 

" I don't quite know what to do," said Har- 
riet, meditatively. '^ They hardly call it steal- 
ing — yet it was hidden, showing she felt that 
there was something wrong about it. Steal- 
ing is a natural result of a slave's life. I will 
take this, but I will give her some tea and 
sugar when she goes away as a present, and 
tell her that she is earning money now and is 
able to buy things for herself." 

The little episode of giving the present was 
interesting to an on-looker who understood 
the secret. Harriet's manner was impressive, 
the black woman's silky, but she compre- 
hended the lesson and I think took the moral 
to heart. She never sinned in that way again 
while with us. 

The class of negroes we encountered at 
Beaufort was largely the plantation hands, 
who were nearer animals than the northern 
mind could imagine, even when it expedled 
but little. The children wore one article of 



85 



clothing made of bagging; with the girls it 
was a long skirted dress, with the boys a 
jacket and trousers in one piece. That was 
all. No underclothes, shoes or cap. A little 
black boy, about five years old, wandered in 
one day, we never exadlly knew from where, 
and adopted us. It was like having a small 
dog with a few anthropomorphic tendencies. 
He never spoke save when we addresssed him, 
and then he answered in an ultra negro dia- 
left, which was as incomprehensible as if he 
had been pure Congo. He smiled, he was 
glad of food, and he kept out of the way of 
the cook, while he was always in sight some- 
where. At night he crept into the room and 
curled down, blinked at the fire and slept like 
a little dog. Harriet felt something touch 
her feet one evening as we sat near the table 
in the middle of the parlor talking with some 
officers who had called. She looked and there 
the little fellow was, crouched down and nod- 
ding with sleep. The pathos of the thing was 
too much — we were not used to a state of half 
humanity, which slept anywhere and ate what 

36 



was thrown to it, and Harriet induced the 
Colonel to make inquiries among the black 
servants that were at the camp of the 7th 
Connecticut, and some relative was at last 
found who took him in charge. 

Colonel Hawley came in one day from camp 
and said that Colonel Chatfield of the 6th 
Connedlicut was ordered north, and had of- 
fered his house on Bay street to his brother 
officer, if he would like it. Harriet thought 
she would. It was in better repair — it was 
nearer the camp of the 7th Regiment. The 
Colonel could not leave his duties, but he sent 
his orderly and the Colonel's man Harris with 
a cart, and the moving began. It was not like 



a '' moving:,^' at home. We had, with our 



trunks, exaftly two small wagon loads of fur- 
niture and we were settled in the new house by 
noon. The Colonel brought a friend down 
to supper and we had waffles, baked over an 
open fire, the waffle-iron having been found 
stowed under the outside back stairs. Harriet 
seized it saying, " this is the first best gift to 
man," and held on to that waffle-iron through 



all the chances and changes that befell us 
afterwards. 

The house was much pleasanter than the 
other, being on the street that overlooked the 
broad arm of water which sets up from the 
sea and is not quite a river nor yet a bay. It 
curved just above us and was bordered with 
high pines, and the sunsets across the sweep 
of the water and through the pines were 
always beautiful. The house was built with 
a piazza across both stories of the front, a hall 
through the middle and rooms on either side. 
That on the right we used as a dining room, 
and the room behind it we took for a kitchen. 
All the outbuildings, the kitchens and the 
slave quarters had disappeared and regiments 
were encamped within ten yards of our back 
door. The sentries of a New York Regiment 
were even nearer and their dress parade was 
always a pleasant sight from the side win- 
dows. 

In her letters home she speaks of a horse- 
back ride. 



28 



*' We went some distance back into the island, by 
the long line of stockade and other fortifications with 
a wild woodpath which took us by a little deserted 
church and beautiful graveyard containing the stone 
tomb of the Baynard family. You may remember Joe 
telling us in one of his letters a year ago, how the 
beautiful white Italian marble doors had been broken 

by the vandals of some regiment and how the 

7th C. V. fearing they might be charged with it, 
raised the money and sent on to New York, bought 
new ones and had them put up. We stopped there a 
few minutes just on the edge of the woods, it was so 
wild and beautiful; and were reminded of the war by 
the pickets stationed by the church. Then we went 
on again through a strange tropical looking wood; 
partly live oaks and gum trees, but mostly of pal- 
mettos, the largest I have seen, strange and foreign 
looking, and the other trees all wreathed with vines 
and hung with long trailing moss. We rode through 
this for a long distance, and then it suddenly opened 
and through a great grove of tall palmettos and taller 
pines, we came out upon a smooth, sandy, white beach 
and the blue waves flashed and gUttered and dashed 
their spray at our horses' feet." 

" I go every day to the hospital; there is one quite 
near the house. There are not many here who are 
very sick and I do not spend a great deal of time 
there, indeed I cannot, but I make it a point to take 

39 



some little thing to eat and spend an hour or so 
chatting with the men every day. ' ' 

"New Year's Day at Beaufort, S. C. 

Jan. I, 1863. If you at the north had half as 
happy a New Year's day as we in the Southern 
Department you enjoyed a great deal. I dare say 
that many of you remembered that it was Emanci- 
pation Day — but we saw and felt it with every breath 
we drew. Some days ago Gen. Saxton issued the 
invitation. It would have taken a heavy storm in- 
deed to have kept us from accepting this invitation. 

But no morning ever rose more magnificently beau, 
tiful, cloudlessly clear and cool and bracing, yet not 
so cool but that a delicate woman might remain out 
of doors the whole day. It seemed early when we 
started for the camp of the black regiment, but many 
were the bright and happy looking black faces we 
passed and many the New Year's greetings we re- 
ceived from the owners thereof. 

The wharf was already crowded with negroes, gay 
in their bright clean turbans and their best things 
generally, and it took some time for the motle}^ and 
most interesting and amusing multitude to get safely 
stowed away in Gen. Saxton' s little steamer, the 
Flora, which he had kindly offered for the occasion. 

The camp being four miles distant from Beaufort 
and the road a heavy one through the deep sand, 

30 



of course the sail down the beautiful river was to 
be coveted — unless by the happy few who possessed 
horses. 

But the crowd was orderly and quiet and the sail 
delightful, especially as the band of the 8th Maine 
gave us music. 

Arrived at the landing, the regiment was drawn up 
to receive us and we were most kindly greeted by 
Col. Higginson and the other officers — the grand Hve 
oaks standing out clear against the southern sky, in 
the foreground the black soldiers in their bright red 
trousers and nearer the water groups of negroes of 
all ages, all styles of costume, their queer made 
' dugouts ' and flatboats crowded with them and the 
steamer's boat also filled. 

The platform for the speakers was eredled a little 
way back from the shore in a grove of live oaks said 
to be the most beautiful one on the Island and thither 
we proceeded. 

The principal guests and the ladies being seated, 
prayer was offered by the Chaplain of the regiment 
and then the President's Proclamation was read by 
Dr. Brisbane, one of the commissioners for the sale 
of lands, a man who, as Col. Higginson said, hav- 
ing in his early manhood given freedom to his own 
slaves, it seemed fitting should now in his maturer 
years be permitted to read the tidings of freedom to 
others. 

31 



A beautiful stand of colors was then presented to 
the regiment by Mr. French in a very neat and earn- 
est speech on behalf of friends in New York, and as 
Col. Higginson received the unfurled banner in his 
hand and turned to reply, a single quavering voice, 
evidently that of an aged negro, burst out into the 
song ' America: ' 

" My Country, 'tis of thee 
Sweet Land of Liberty. ' ' 

Instantlj^ other voices among them joined in, — the 
audience on the platform, much moved, would have 
joined also, but waving his hand and saying ' leave 
them to themselves,' Col. Higginson silenced us and 
the song went on swelling louder and fuller till the 
whole regiment had joined and all the great crowd 
also. Tears filled many eyes around me — for myself 
I could hardly check the sobs, as I thought, for the 
first time now they have a country; it is to them now 
a Land of Liberty. 

When they had finished. Col. Higginson spoke 
most eloquently though he said that words seemed 
weak and useless after such an answer as had been 
already given. He had heard many songs sung in 
camp in the six weeks he had been with them — but 
never this — they could not sing it before, for they 
never had a country before. All their songs had been 
sad, almost touching minor strains, speaking the 

32 



suppressed sadness born of ages of oppression, and he 
repeated a verse of which I can recall but a line or 
two: — 

" I know de moon rise and I know de star rise, 

mourners, lay my body down, — 

I know de moon rise and I know de star rise 

1 want to get to Jordan to lay dis body down." 

But, now he said they should know the moon rise 
and the star rise only no more; for them too the sun 
of liberty had risen. 

I can give no adequate idea of his address. You, 
who are familiar with his strong earnest mind as a 
writer, and his graceful manner as a speaker can 
imagine what he would say and how well he would 
say it on such an occasion. I know one tough old 
soldier out on the edge of the crowd, one of a Con- 
necticut regiment, was heard to say with a suspicious 
winking of both eyes at once, that ' It was very 
affecting, wasn't it.' 

Finally he called up a sergeant and a corporal and 
committed the colors to them with a most solemn and 
earnest charge to each. 

They were intelligent and fine looking black men, 
and he requested them to say a few words to their 
friends among the audience. They each made a 
short address showing how well they understood and 
how deeply they felt what they were fighting for and 

33 



especially urging others to enlist. One of them re- 
ferred in a very neat manner which brought out 
shouts of laughter from the crowd, to the fac5t that a 
great proportion of the crowd consisted of women, 
saying that if it had been the Fourth of July, or any- 
thing of that kind, there would have been more men 
than women present, but they were so afraid of hav- 
ing to enlist that the men dared not come. 

Then Gen. Saxton, greeted with rousing cheers, 
made a short pradlical address and several other 
speakers followed. 

I ought perhaps to have said that both Col. Hig- 
ginson and Mr. French were repeatedly interrupted 
by enthusiastic applause and that the President and 
everybody else kept getting three cheers. 

The final ode written for the occasion was sung, 
and then Col. Higginson told us he had invited a 
great multitude there, and he couldn't promise that 
they would all get fed, but he would say that ten 
oxen had been roasted for them within twelve hours, 
and a large quantity of hard bread provided with 
which most of them were familiar and all of them 
ought to be. So we adjourned to the barbecue 
grounds and ate a little of the beef and bread, and 
then the boat was ready and a great crowd passed 
down to the wharf and on board again, and a still 
greater one dispersed in other directions. 



34 



But such a good natured and well behaved crowd 
it was. Not an oath or a drunken man did I hear or 
see during the entire day. I did not even see any- 
rude jostling. 

There were probably 2500 people there, indeed I 
heard it estimated at 3000, though I thought that 
too high. 

But I certainly never saw any such number col- 
lected at the North, so quiet and well conducted on 
a day of public rejoicing. 

I think I shall not need the sprig of live oak which 
I broke from one of the trees that overhung the 
platform to make me remember that day. It would 
not be easy for me to forget it. I thank God that I 
saw it as I did." 

We were comfortably settled at Beaufort 
and then the regiment was ordered to Hilton 
Head. '' The fortunes of war," said Harriet. 
General and Miss Terry invited us to stay 
with them at his headquarters a day or two 
until we could settle upon some place to live 
in at Hilton Head, and that evening orders 
came from General Hunter sending the regi- 
ment to Fernandina, a little town on the inside 
shore of Amelia Island on the coast of Florida. 

35 



Harriet went up to Beaufort tliat night, [my 
burned foot still incapacitated me from adlive 
service,] packed our trunks, dismissed the one 
servant, turned over the house with all the 
furniture we had so painfully acquired to the 
Quartermaster of the Post and came down 
again in the morning boat, ready to go to 
Florida. 

^' Rosa had been so used to ' sudden doins^ 
since de Yankees had come,' that she was not 
surprised to have me send her off when she 
came leisurely around to get our breakfast. 
But I was sorry to leave that bureau which 
Mr. Hervey brought us one morning and set 
down in the parlor wrong end up. With what 
a triumphant air he made his men put the 
marble top on the bottom and then looked at 
us, as much as to say, ' There, you'll never 
have a nicer piece of furniture than that even 
at home.' When we moved on to Bay Street, 
I had it set up right and I always wondered 
if he noticed the difference." 

We started at midnight for Fernandina and 
got there the next day at five o'clock. 

86 



The headquarters there was a house belong- 
ing to ex-Senator Yulee. A large square, 
white, wooden building, with the kitchen and 
servants' quarters not entirely separated, like 
the older houses we had seen in South Caro- 
lina, but connedled with a long latticed piazza. 

Colonel Hawley was in command of the 
Post, and the regiment was encamped in tents 
just outside the little town with two or three 
private houses near, as headquarters for the 
line officers and as hospitals, and also a 
church where we used to go on Sundays, our 
ribbons and dresses the only diversity from 
the blue uniforms and brass buttons. We 
were '^ the ladies of the regiment ;" for besides 
Mrs. Hawley, there was Mrs. Wayland, the 
wife of the chaplain, Mrs. Gardiner, the wife 
of the then Lt.-Colonel, and Mrs. Dennis, wife 
of Captain Dennis. 

One day notice was sent to headquarters 
from the outermost pickets, two or three miles 
down on the island and nearest the main land, 
that the rebels wanted to send over by flag of 
truce, a lady who wished to go north. The 

37 



provost-marslial, Captain Sanford, and Major 
Rodman, went down to receive the rebel party. 
The young lady was a Miss Buddington, of 
New London, who had been shut into South- 
ern lines while spending the winter with an 
uncle and had never been able to get through 
and return home. She was received politely 
by our officers, who endeavored to converse 
with her, on the way back to the town, '' in 
spite," as she laughingly said herself after- 
wards, '' of the faft that I was horribly dressed, 
for I had been in the Confederation for two 
years, and my shoes were home-made cob- 
blings." 

Major Rodman found, to his dismay, that 
she was quite deaf, and he said to Captain San- 
ford, ^' you must talk to her, provost-marshal, 
I cannot." This part of the little episode is 
always remembered by the people of the regi- 
ment, because in one day less than three weeks 
from that time Major Rodman was not simply 
engaged to the young lady but they were mar- 
ried. We had various little festivities after 
that for the bride and groom, the supper on 

38 



each occasion being a triumph of mind over 
matter, although we had a sutler at the post 
and 3^ou could buy sardines and canned salmon. 

All sorts of devices were pradliced to make 
things that were not congenial in themselves 
into something that was like what something 
else would be if you had it. Dr. Woods, of 
the gunboat '' Mohawk," which lay near us, 
sent Mrs. Hawley a pie. 

" You are to believe that it is made of north- 
ern apples," said he, " and, moreover, I made 
it myself." It was very good. " All you have 
to do," said Harriet, '' is to look off and chew, 
like the man with chewing gum. If one is 
smart enough to do that one would hardly be- 
lieve that this was pieces of cracker, softened, 
flavored with lemon, sweetened and baked in a 
pie crust of the regular sort." 

Another triumph was a discovery of Har- 
riet's, that hard bread broken up fine and 
baked with grated cheese was as marvelously 
like maccaroni as crackers were like apples. 
The joy was not unmixed with discomfiture, 
however, for on the first occasion that the dish 

39 



was brought to the table we bad a guest arrive 
rather unexpedledly on the steamer. He was 
invited to dinner and the Colonel indiscreetly 
asked him if he would have some of the mac- 
caroni a second time. The guest had seen 
camp fare with little variety for several months 
and joyfully said " yes." This dish had been 
emptied at the first course — Harriet took it 
up with a perfeft air and handed it to Harris, 
the Colonel's man, who vanished with as much 
alacrity as if barrels of maccaroni just from 
Naples were in the kitchen. The conversa- 
tion went on and he did not re-appear until it 
was time for the dessert, and then of course 
it was too late for any other dish. 

One morning several low river steamers 
came panting up to the wharf covered with 
black men in red uniforms carrying guns. It 
was the black regiment of Colonel Higginson. 
The Colonel came ashore to get guides, look 
at maps and then started off again. We could 
see them, across the flat marshes where they 
landed and attacked St. Mary's, a pestilent 
little town, lying near us on the main land, 

40 



wliicli had given great trouble, harboring 
deserters, sending in spies and stealing sup- 
plies. The red of their uniform showed them 
forming, marching, breaking into files and 
the smoke of the guns told that they kept up 
to their work, and later the smoke of the 
burning town blew in wreaths along the flat 
meadows, and then they came back stopping 
again at Fernandina. Several of them had 
showai '' Sambo's ability to stop a bullet as 
well as a white man," they were wounded, 
and Harriet helped to get bandages and lint 
for them. 

It was a stirring scene, looking on at this 
first ordered attack of Sambo upon his master 
— a new chapter in history. 

We were living in a house, yet we were 
virtually in a camp, and might see a battle at 
any moment. The line of our outer pickets 
was in full sight from the main land and the 
sentries were always on the lookout at night 
for any signaling, by lights or rockets, that 
would betray a disposition to make a raid 
upon us by the enemy. 



41 



We were awakened again and again at 
night — how breathless it was to be aroused 
from deep sleep, or if one were lying awake 
to hear the thud, thud of a horse galloping up 
the street, and think that must be the officer 
of the day going the grand rounds — to hear 
the sentry challenge, hear him dismount, and 
know that in the silence which followed was the 
officer's whispered reply, and then hear him 
thunder on the door of our quarters and know 
that there was some alarm abroad. Then 
there would be a clattering of the orderlies 
that slept at the back of the house as they 
ran down the outside stairs and of the Colonel 
on the front stairs, a slamming of the doors 
and then usually a silence, sometimes a stir 
as of men in the diredlion of the camp, then 
an hour or two during which if we heard 
nothing we usually went to sleep to be roused 
again by hearing the Colonel and the orderlies 
come rattling back, and to guess that it was a 
false alarm and that we should not have to 
hurry off to the gunboat, the Mohawk, where 



42 



it was understood the ladies were to go in 
case of an attack. 

Late in April the regiment was ordered to 
St. Augustine as suddenly as — as things 
are ordered in time of war. There we went 
into another house which had been the head- 
quarters of the previous commandant of the 
Post, and which like that at Fernandina had 
the necessaries and a few luxuries of life, but 
not the comforts. We had pier glasses in the 
parlor and not an inch of carpet or matting 
through the whole house. 

" But then," said Harriet, ^' we have a night- 
blooming jessamine and a banana in the back 
yard, and a row of great Yuccas," (the Yucca 
Gloriosa which grows to a height of 20 feet 
and sends up its magnificent spike of ivory 
white blossoms a yard higher at the top) ^' in 
the front yard, and what a pleasure it will be 
to see them blossom." She had that pleasure, 
seeing the banana send down its first long 
purple sheath, which opened back four stout 
leaves, and under them, in a row around the 
stem was the first circle of blossoms. They 



43 



perfected themselves and fell, and meantime, 
the main stem lengthened down another joint, 
and lo ! a new set of sheathing leaves and 
another row of prote6led blossoms and so on, 
nntil the stem was three feet long. Florida 
is semi-tropical, and the new plants and flowers 
were a constant source of interest. 

" Think of a cloth of gold rose," said Har- 
riet, '' having such confidence in the climate 
as to blossom out of doors — think of a climate 
which allows such condudl — and think too, 
how I have to take an old slipper every night 
and go over the store room with it killing the 
cockroaches, and I have to examine those 
muslin curtains carefully, lest the wretches 
should leave their eggs in the folds." Hav- 
ing military command of a Post, gives the 
commandant an authority by which it is pos- 
sible to see to the sanitary arrangements as 
no municipal authority ever can. Therefore 
the sanitary conditions of the different towns 
all along the Atlantic and the Gulf during 
the war, were excellent. The precautions 
suggested by the doctors, the care for prevail- 



4i 



ing cleanliness, had its beneficial effect. The 
only cases of yellow fever in the Department 
were two or three at Hilton Head which ter- 
minated fatally in the case of Gen. Mitchell, 
but other than these there was no illness of 
an epidemic nature. Harriet visited the hos- 
pital regularly, because there were always a 
few cases of illness of some sort, but they did 
not need the care and labor, which afterward 
fell to her share in Washington or later still 
at Wilmington, where the released prisoners 
were brought from Andersonville, and the 
refugees following General Sherman's march 
brought jail fever and typhus in its worst 
form. 

I said the war cloud hung over us always, 
even during these hours at St. Augustine 
which had an outside look of peacefulness. 
Our house was directly on the bay, with only 
the width of a road between us and the stone 
coping of the sea wall, which kept the waters 
from invading the land. We sat on the 
piazza one evening watching the refledlions 
and sparkles of the moon on the water ; the 

45 



bugles had just rung out ''taps," in sweet 
silvery sounds, from the fort, from the bar- 
racks and from the guard house. We listened 
as we always did to the long clear notes, then 
the colonel said, '' these are the horrors of 
war," and then added abruptly, '' I have writ- 
ten to Hilton Head asking General Gilmore 
to recall us. While all that pounding is 
going on at Fort Sumter, I cannot rest here. 
The post is in order now, the matters I was 
sent here to settle are all arranged, probably 
the next steamer will bring orders for us to go." 
Harriet said nothing, she had expected it, 
I think. Half the regiment under Lt.-Col. 
Rodman had been ordered up to Hilton Head 
a short time before. It was natural that the 
colonel should wish to have all '' our boys," 
as we had come to think of and call them, with 
him, and natural too for him to wish to be in 
the thick of whatever was going on. It was 
the end of our quiet evenings. The last 
steamer had brought the adlual news from 
Gettysburg, although we knew before, that a 
great battle must have taken place some- 

46 



where. The word had filtered into the air, as 
it were — probably it had in some way come 
to the negroes from their communication 
with each other, or the rebel inhabitants of 
the town, for there were many, had learned 
it through our lines ; so we were not sur- 
prised when the great news really came, and 
all soldiers' souls beat with a desire to ter- 
minate this struggle ; to close up the ranks 
and march on to the end. 

The next evening, *' steamer from Hilton 
Head," was signalled, and we made ready 
for news from Fort Sumter, and from ''our 
boys," who were at Morris Island. The 
steamer had to lie off the bar that night, but 
came in the next morning, in the glorious 
sunlight with all her flags flying and we 
thought there must be good news. We heard 
shouting and than a burst of cheering down 
at the wharf and rushed to the door forget- 
ting military discipline, and spoke to the 
sentry on guard there — ''What is it, what 
is the news?" said we. The man turned 
toward us, the expression of his face, never 

47 



to be forgotten, as lie jammed his cap over his 
eyes, and answered huskily, " Our boys led 
in an attack on Fort Wagner ; we was re- 
pulsed — our major is wounded, Capt. Burdick 
is killed, Capt. Chamberlin is a prisoner, and 
they have ordered the rest of us up there." 

Harriet and I looked at each other ; after a 
pause, in which neither of us spoke or could 
speak so heavily had the blow fallen, she 
said, '' Those flags must be mended before 
they go." 

" We're ordered off to-morrow morning at 
sunrise," said the sentry. 

It was Sunday but we hunted up the one 
or two silk dresses we had ventured to bring, 
took pieces from them, sent around to the 
wives of other of&cers to know if they could 
not also contribute (they did — what they 
could), and we worked all day on the piazza 
patching the eagle, and the stripes, and stars 
which had flown so gloriously when Fort 
Pulaski was taken, and were to fly more glori- 
ously than ever when Fort Fisher fell two 
years later. 

48 



Colonel Hawley's own comfort was not for- 
gotten. Harriet slipped into his scanty bag- 
gage whatever he could be persuaded to take, 
that would be of use to him on the burning 
sands of Morris Island. 

The next morning it was a saddened group 
of women who watched the steamer down the 
bay and out over the bar. 

Mrs. Wayland, bright and sweet as she 
usually was, had been crying that morning, 
and the looks on the faces of the rest of us 
told our story. 

" I wish I had asked what they cheered so 
for yesterday morning, and made me think it 
was good news," said she. " I asked," said I. 

"What was it?" her tone that of one who 
would like to quarrel with something, as a 
means of diverting emotions stirred to their 
depths. 

"It was for the bravery of our boys in the 
attack and their pluck in the retreat." 

Her question had not served its objedl, we 
all melted into silent tears again as we re- 
called the meeting we had had on the piazza 

49 



the evening before, where the seven remain- 
ing companies drawn up in line, the colonel, 
his own voice breaking sometimes as he spoke, 
had read the report of the fight, with personal 
mention of the men's bravery in many in- 
stances ; bringing home the adlualities of a 
fight as nothing else could ever have done. 

Harriet afterward had a chance to visit her 
husband at Morris Island, and part of the 
next winter she spent with him in camp at 
Helena Island, opposite Hilton Head ; the 
regiment being ordered there to rest and 
recruit after the hot summer on the sand at 
Morris Island. 

I was with her only a part of the time and 
so cannot give full details of her life there. 
In one of her letters she says : 

" I've commenced a little school among the soldiers; 
there were many among the conscripts and substitutes 
who could neither read nor write. One, a North Car- 
olina cracker, a deserter from the rebel army, came 
and asked me to teach him and I told him to bring as 
many others as he could. They are most of them 
very hard cases and I am somewhat afraid they will 

50 



steal everything in the tent and pick my pocket, but 
I enjoy teaching them, they are so eager to learn." 

Jan. 17, 1864, a meeting in the church on St. 
Helena Island. "It was a beautiful day and the 
church was crowded : we were quite early and the 
scene at the church — itself surrounded by great trees 
and literally in the woods where groups of people, 
black and white, old and young, babies and children, 
on foot, on horseback, in wagons, in donkey carts — in- 
describable and nameless vehicles — the black women 
dressed in gay colors — invariably wearing turbans, 
the men, many of them in clothes Ham must have 
brought out of the ark — the white ladies in fashion- 
able poky bonnets and here and there an officer in 
uniform — altogether was very picturesque. They 
sang two of their wild hymns — then Mr. French read 
a portion of scripture and made them a short address 
and read them a circular from Gen. Saxton telling 
them all about Mr. Lincoln's arrangements in regard 
to the lands. They are to be allowed to preempt the 
Government lands here just as other people are out 
west and to buy, if they can, to the extent of 40 acres, 
the ground being surve3^ed and laid out into lots of 
twenty acres each and they are to pay only $1.25 per 
acre. I am thankful so wise a plan has been adopted. 
Now the world can see whether the blacks can take 
care of themselves or not. He was followed by Gen. 
Saxton, then by several other speakers, with singing 

51 



by the congregation. It is a great day for the negroes 
when they are permitted in South Carolina to become 
land-owners. It was strange to see the intense though 
still excitement among them, some of those in the 
galleries bent forward so eagerly I thought they 
would fall on their heads among the people below. ' ' 



52 



The next spring we both went north, and 
she wrote her husband : 

''I can't bear to leave the men, I want to be where 
I can go to the hospital and see some of their faces 
every day. It seems like home to me if I can only 
see a soldier with a 7 in his cap." 

And again March 9, 1864. "The more I went 
about among our poor wounded men at Hilton Head 
the harder it was for me to leave, and one of the old 
nurses in the General Hospital, whom I knew pretty 
well, begged me so hard to stay when I told him I 
was going, sajang that he knew I did good among 
the men — that even at the last moment I made an 
effort to get a place in the linen room. I did not suc- 
ceed, but I came away more than half determined to 
go right back. I was pleased as any school girl in 
watching the elegant carriages and fine horses and 
superb dresses of the ladies as I drove up Broadway 
Monday afternoon, but suddenly I seemed to see far 
more plainly the bare rooms with long rows of narrow 
cots, in each one a worn, patient, manly face, and 
before I knew it I was sobbing. I must go back and 
do what I can for my poor boys. It was hard enough 
to come away, it seemed to pull my heart in two. I 

53 



am afraid you will oppose me, but I want to get Miss 
Dix to appoint me to some place in a Hospital at 
Beaufort — in the linen room, or as an assistant nurse, 
so that my duties shall not be too heavy for my 
strength, but so that I shall have some regular work 
to do and feel that I have a right to be there." 

April 3d, answering a letter from her husband. 
' ' It does me good to have you write your whole soul 
out to me so. It makes me feel that I haven't lived 
with you all these years for nothing, that I really am 
part of you — part of your life. I'm more and more 
thankful that I have been with you this past year [in 
the South]. How I thank God for giving me a hus- 
band who can fight straight on under that great inex- 
orable duty, not only through this war, but through 
any political war that ma}^ come for God and the 
right ! I honor you more and more as the years go 
by — and though I'm not without ambition for you 
[pray God it may not be a selfish ambition] yet I tell 
you truly, I would rather live with you in utter pov- 
erty all ni3^ life than have you stain one little corner 
of your soul in a struggle for place or power. You 
know how I love you, yet I do not exaggerate when 
I say that I would rather see you dead than see you 

such a man as . I am not exacftly content that 

you should deserve promotion and not receive it, yet 
perhaps I am as nearly so as it is worth while to be. 
I can't help longing for rest, too, sometimes, but I 

54 



shall never have it in this world, and I thank God 
most heartily that at last I have something to do 
better than crochet-work ! Not that I am going to 
despise that, but if He will only give me strength 
enough to do something real for Him !" 

Then in April she was assigned to the 
hospital at Armory Square in Washington, 
starting a new ward, where none of her inti- 
mate friends were with her and where her life 
was such a round of trying labor, that she 
never put much of it into her letters. 

" It was terrible enough to live it, without 
trying to reproduce it to others," she said 
afterward when we remarked we knew very 
little of her there. The worst cases from the 
battlefields of the Potomac army were brought 
there, because it was near the landing and 
because the rooms were airy. Her ward 
was large and sometimes six men died in one 
day from their wounds, during that terrible 
summer when McClellan was fighting before 
Richmond. She wrote to her husband of the 
less trying and touching scenes, keeping her 
letters always cheerful and bright. She was 

55 



on duty from six in the morning till ten at 
night, with only a few minutes for hurried 
meals. 

"As I have so large a ward, my doctor has given 
me two orderlies beside the ' No. 6,' which every lady 
nurse has, and who is supposed to do her errands and 
assist her in giving medicines. My ' No. 6 ' is inval- 
uable." 

She had been in her ward two days, six 
men had died, two more were so low that 
they could not live until morning, when she 
writes : 

" I am glad and thankful that I am here, just as I 
am that you are there, yet the days drift by in one 
long agon5^ I am learning not to let mj^self y"^^/ as 
much as I did at first, yet I can never get used to it." 
*'0, my men are dying so fast! The truth is this 
Hospital is so near the boat that it is alwa3^s filled up 
with the very worst cases, and this time they all say 
they have never had men whose systems seemed in 
such a low bad state. There comes a man to tell me 
' Capt. Bell is bleeding,' a secondary hemorrhage, 
and I thought his amputated leg was doing so 
nicely. There his sweet, gentle, motherly-looking 
wife is standing right by him and his children." 

56 



The tenth corps was ordered up to the 
James River in Virginia in the spring of 
1864. Of their first fighting at Bermuda 
Hundreds she wrote, June 9th, 1864 : — 

"The Seventh has been in heavy adlion. It is 
terrible that it should have suffered so. My boys — 
my boys — they don't know how I love them." 

June 12, 1864. "I must stop and give out my 
stimulants. To think that / should ever be glad to 
see men drink whiskey ! We give a great deal, our 
men are in so low a condition." 

' ' I had no idea of the amount of brains and labor 
required to keep even one ward in a Hospital in good 
working order, even after it is all started : nurses, 
waiters, doctors and all, we all work as hard as we 
can. How the M. C's pour in upon us ! All very 
right for them to look after the soldiers, and especially 
those from their districts, but I do wish they wouldn't 
wear such squeaking boots and tramp about so noisily. 
They wouldn't do so in the sickroom of a man at 
home, why should they do it in the sickroom of thirty 
men ?" 

To her husband, July 24. "You see what the 
Sanitar}^ Commission does and I see what the Sol- 
dier's Aid does. One of the nurses who had been 
here more than a year said to me to-day, that she 
couldn't have made her men comfortable if it had 



not been for the Hartford Aid. The Government 
provides all the essejitials, food and medicine, and 
surgeons and nurses, but I don't think Uncle Sam 
provides pocket handkerchiefs or easy chairs when 
the sick boys first begin to sit up, or carpet slippers, 
or lemonade when they are feverish, or jelly to tempt 
their appetites a little when they're sick of Hospital 
tea [which isn't like home tea], or books and games 
[checkers and dominoes, and soltaire, etc.] to help 
along the weary hours of a slow convalescence.. You 
go into a Hospital and ask the boys if they want any- 
thing and they'll tell you 'no, they are very well 
taken care of, ' and yet you find that all these things 
and many more are ver}^ acceptable when they are 
offered, and really help the men to get well. Good- 
night, there is the bugle and I shall be in darkness in 
a moment." 

Aug. 12. "I am weary of this whole matter of 
promotion. The way these things are managed here 
in Washington is unutterably disgusting to me. If I 
did not reall}'^ believe that you could do much more 
good as an officer, that you are needed as one, I should 
really think of asking you to resign and enlist as a 
private. I can't tell you how hateful the whole busi- 
ness seems. O, I think the world needs to have 
Christ come again." 

" For God's love don't say you wish it were per- 
missible to fight duels. I can imagine no circum- 

58 



stances which would excuse a duel in this age. If a 
man is good for anything, he is too good to be shot at 
for any personal quarrel, — if he is good for nothing 
he certainly is not good enough to shoot at you. If 
two utterly abandoned wretches choose to agree to 
shoot each other, that might save the hangman a job, 
but I suppose that would hardly be called a duel. 
No, I cannot conceive of anything which could make 
a duel seem right to me, though I think there are out- 
rages which justify a man in shooting another in cold 
blood just as he would an uncaged tiger." 

Aug. 14, 1864. " I wish you could look in and see 
my ward now, all so clean and nice and quiet, every- 
body with clean shirts and clean pillow cases and 
clean spreads on the beds, most of the men either 
reading or asleep, and all evidently comfortable. It 
would take but a few things more to make my ward 
come up to my ideal. I shall be as proud of it as 
you of your regiment. I'm not sure whether my men 
like me very much, but I know they mind me and 
keep order, and that's what I care most for." 

She went away for needed rest about Sept. 
8th, 1864 and returned Nov. 26th of the same 
year. 

' ' Having got creditably through with our ' inspec- 
tion,' having made out and sent in my requisitions for 
59 



food, and having revised my medicine list and given 
all my boys their dinners, and brought an apple to 44 
and made him some lemonade and cut his hair, and 
changed the cushions under 39' s foot and leg so that 
the poor fellow could be comfortable, and having had 
a short service conducted by a member of the Chris- 
tian Commission, I can write you with a good con- 
science." 

Dec. 18, 1864. " Last evening we ladies had a tea- 
party. These tea-parties are quite festal occasions 
with us, though they consist simply in our taking 
our tea together in the minute parlor otherwise called 
lumber room of the ladies' house. Each one con- 
tributes what she can to the table, each one owns a cup 
and saucer and teaspoon, and we have three or four 
knives and two forks among us. Plates we scarcely 
know the use of, and a deceased sheet does duty as 
a table cloth, the table consisting of three of the little 
stands which we have in our rooms for dressing tables, 
set together. My poor boy with the lock-jaw is really 
better to-night, I think he may live it through, and 
so I shall sleep." 

Dec. 25, 1864. "They [her 'boys'] made me a 
charming present this morning greatly to my surprise, 
of a nice photograph album — a really handsome one 
in which I hope to see many of their thin faces soon. 
I was very much pleased and touched, for I have 
always had the feeling that my boys cared very little 

6U 



about me. I have been so busy always, had so much 
more to do all Lummer than I possibly could do, that 
I had no time to be agreeable to my men or to make 
special friends of them, and have always felt that they 
could not possibly know how much I cared for them. 
And when I came back this fall, I found my ward 
had been mismanaged and was so completely demor- 
alized — the men were so noisy and dirty, and rude, 
that, though I took hold of the work of reformation 
with good pluck, yet I felt and knew that I must 
share the fate of all reformers in becoming thoroughly 
unpopular. But my boys are good ones I find, as 
well as brave ones, and can stand my fault-finding as 
well as bullets, and some of them certainly appreciate 
my efforts to do all I can for them." 

Dec. 25, 1864. "We trimmed the ward by way of 
keeping Christmas. A wreath of evergreens hangs 
on each of the twelve pillars, festoons across the center 
of the hall, a large garrison flag looped across the far 
end, while at this end are crosses and stars. Mrs. 
Foster sent me eight beautiful flowering plants which 
stand in the windows, and a bouquet of fresh flowers 
from Miss Dixon on the piano. I have rarely enjoyed 
anything more than sitting and chatting with my 
men and tying greens yesterday. The Commissary 
and I clubbed together and gave all the full diet 
patients a plum pudding, and we lady nurses did the 
same by all the others. I take great comfort in Ward, 

61 



m}^ No. 6, who is not only faithful in his ordinary 
duties but a reliable friend and able to be of very 
great assistance to me in telling me about the men." 

Dec. 30th, 1864. "We were wild with delight 
when we heard of Sherman's victory. I couldn't 
help going down in the dining-room where my full 
diet patients and those of the ward above — a hundred 
and thirt}'- — were at breakfast, and getting the ward- 
master to call for three cheers for Sherman." 

Jan. ist, 1865. "To-day being New Year's, I 
treated my boys by adding turnips and potatoes to 
their dinner of stewed beef [fresh], and pickles and 
pudding. I gave them a dessert too, of some of Mr. 
Clark's nice apples, and I said Happy New Year to 
everybody I met, and that's about all. I forgot that 
I gave a cravat to each of my four section nurses and 
have another waiting for the little black-eyed boy, 
who made me a Christmas present of some paper and 
envelopes. A strange life we lead here — monotonous 
enough, yet very intense, very absorbing and very 
exciting. Isolated to a degree which is really absurd 
considering where we are, we have a little world of 
our own, and there is a great deal of pleasure in it and 
a strange fascination." 

She went into Ward A, in January, 1865. 

January 6th. " I felt very badly to leave the 
armory, and must confess I am not a little homesick 

62 



to go back to it, as it was my duty to induct the 
' new lady ' into the armory at the same time I was 
to report for duty in ' A ' — and as the new lady had 
never been into a hospital before, and didn't know 
anything about it, I really took charge of them both, 
making out requisitions, etc., at first, and I still feel 
it my duty to go up there and visit my boys at least 
once every day. Then we are turned out of the 
ladies' house, which is to be lathed and plastered, 
and put into rooms in the rear of the wards." 

Jan. 15, 1865. " My boy, who has the lock-jaw, is 
slowly dying ; perfectly resigned and happy. I had 
a good little talk with him just now ; it is a comfort 
to talk with anyone who seems to stand and look as 
it were into the other world so calmly and happily. 

" Capt. Nichols, of one of our Conne(5licut regi- 
ments, is dying in the next ward. I have just been 
to say a few comforting words to his poor aunt, who 
reached him this morning. She brought him up and 
has been more than a mother to him. One of my 
men died last night very suddenly, indeed. The doc- 
tor was as much surprised by it as I. Such things 
are exceedingly painful, for they leave with me a 
mingled grief and remorse and self reproach, that I 
had not done more for the poor fellow — had not real- 
ized how sick he was." 

In this new Ward she speaks of the dififer- 

63 



ence in the work, the men mostly convales- 
cents. 

"The work not exhausting but most of it very- 
pleasant, as it brings me into very pleasant and 
friendly relations with my men." 

Feb. 19, 1865. "I think you will go back to the 
* Press.' I do not believe you would be contented long 
if you should have an appointment abroad. I think 
you would very soon feel the sort of stimulus the 
work at home would be, and I think the work there 
needs you." 

' ' There comes that odious Walt Whitman to talk 
evil and unbelief to my bo3^s. I think I would rather 
see the evil one himself — at least if he had horns and 
hoofs — in my ward. I vShall get him out as soon as 
possible." 

February 23d. "Glorious victories! I stood and 
listened to the salutes yesterday. There are so many 
fortifications in and around Washington that the roar 
and thunder was grand. My boys said it was like old 
times in front of Petersburg, etc." 

" One of my boys died last night. A little slender 
delicate-lookir;g black boy, about as fit to be a soldier 
as I — less so, for he had consumption. He never 
thought of enlisting, but a substitute broker went 
over into Canada [he lived just over the line] drugged 
him and several others, and when they woke up they 

64 



were in Buffalo, where they were sold as substitutes ; 
not only outraged himself, but made to cheat the Gov- 
ernment also. He never did any duty, never could, 
but has been here dying for the last three months, 
and at last sank away to sleep as quietly as a little 
child. That night he seemed to suffer no pain, but 
lay and sang ' I want to go to Jesus ' and the Halle- 
lujah song [the first time he has ever sung since he 
came here], stretched out his hand to his black friend, 
who lay in the next bed, saying, ' give me your 
hand, ' and shook it ; and when asked if he felt better, 
replied, ' O, yes, I'm well now,' and sang the Halle- 
lujah once more. There are wrongs which only 
Heaven can right — but surely that poor child had a 
little glimpse, even here, of the happiness of the 
Eternal City. I am taking comfort among my boys, 
though I have two men very sick with the lung fever. 
I can see that I have a great deal of influence in the 
ward and many of the men are very much attached to 
me as I to them." 

March 3d, 1865. "Do you remember Mr. O ? 

His son was brought here from City Point about a 
month ago — very low, dying — and only lived long 
enough to be put into a decent bed. He was not in 
my ward, but I happened to be in just in time to 
close the poor boy's eyes. I wrote to his father and 
was surprised by a visit from the old man a few days 
ago. He had come to obtain the body of his son. 

65 



He came in this morning — his simple hearted, honest, 
earnest patriotism and grief were very touching. ' ' 

March 5, 1865. "I have to give passive move- 
ments to No. 30 — it is time after that for my Bible 
class and then the lights will be turned down." 

She saw the second inauguratiou of Lincoln 
and says : 

' ' The most significant thing to me in the celebra- 
tion was the battalion of colored infantry and the 
colored brass band and delegation [a large one] from 
the colored Odd Fellows. It is difficult to remember 
sometimes that this is the District of Columbia." 

March 12, 1865. " My life here is more absorbing 
than anything I could have ever imagined. It is 
more like that of a mother of a very large family than 
anything else. Irately some of my boys have mani- 
fested some interest in religious subjec5ls, and every 
evening a few of us gather around my table and read 
a chapter or two in the Bible and talk a little just 
before the last bugle. These things give me an added 
sense of responsibility." 

Feb. 16, 1865. **My men are all doing well. I 
am trying to persuade some of the j^ounger ones who 
are convalescent to stud}^ regularly every day, biit 
don't know that I shall succeed." 

Feb. 27, 1865. To a sister at home — "You spoke 
of a bedquilt in your last ; and havn't you a Soldiers' 



Aid which could send me some bandages too ? made 
of either strong old cloth or new which has been 
washed, so that it is entirely free from starch. I 
should particularly like the quilt, for I have a couple 
of poor fellows here who have been lying on their 
backs — one since last June, the other since last May — 
and I think they will be amused by looking at the 
pieces. One of them, who cannot read very much, 
would I know enjoy it for he has told me about his 
own sewing when a bo3^ I've been teaching him to 
crochet, which he seems to find quite a comfort, and 
if any of your j^oung ladies want to make him a 
present tell them to send him half a dozen skeins of 
bright colored worsted, such as will make pretty little 
lamp mats. Do not blame me if I neglect you and 
everything else, the life here is so absorbing. I grow 
to love my boys so much and I can at last see that I 
am having some influence over them, and that gives 
me a greater sense of responsibility than ever." 

Whether taught by her own experience or 
by the gentle gift of ministry which belonged 
to her, she was so deeply convinced that no 
trifle was unimportant which could vary the 
depressing monotony of a sick-room, that dur- 
ing her stay in the Armory Square Hospital, 
when she went to her room at noon she 

67 



always clianged her dress, though it was only 
substituting for one simple cambric gown, 
another of different color and pattern. 

After the battles in the Wilderness, the 
hospital was so crowded that many men were 
in tents outside. Her way to and from the 
hospital to the dinner barrack lay past one of 
these tents, in which were two men so placed 
that one saw her as she approached and the 
other as she went away. Later, when they 
were moved into the building, it was found 
that the events which had varied their weary 
day had been seeing her pass by. At the 
regular hours of her coming, the one who 
could see her, was on the watch. 

" There comes the neat little woman," he 
would say to his comrade, who answered, 

" What dress has she got on .^" 

" We always called you the neat little 
woman ; we did'nt know your name," one of 
them told her afterwards : '' John and I used to 
wish we could have a wife like that, if we ever 
got well and got home. We didn't know, then, 
you was married ma'am," he added, simply. 

68 



She made strong efforts to get some mem- 
bers of the Seventh who were in prison, re- 
leased, Captain Chamberlain and others — 
interviewing Senator and Mrs. Foster and 
then Mr. Welles, Secretary of the Navy, and 
Mr. Faxon, Asst. Sec. They all promised to 
do what they could. 

To her husband — "I've just received a note from 
Mr. Foster saying that the Secretary of War had put 
the names of our four Seventh officers on the list of 
special exchanges ; so the main point I have gained, 
but do not say anything about it at present, for it 
may be many months still before they are free. Of 
course I shall not give it up till they are." 



69 



Her husband in March, 1865, was ordered 
to Wilmington, N. C. ; he had become com- 
mander of a brigade and was now put in com- 
mand of this post. Harriet soon joined him, 
finding more work to be done there than even 
in the hospital. 

She wrote to her sister — "A steamer goes North 
to-morrow, but as you haven't ' a son among the 
paroled prisoners who reached Wilmington about 
March ist, and hasn't been heard from since,' I can- 
not spend much time on you." 

To a cousin, April 7, 1865. "I intended long ago 
to write you acknowledging the receipt of the pictures 
you sent me for my ward in the Armory Square Hos- 
pital, but I had so many pressing duties to occupy my 
time and strength that the time for letter-writing 
never came, and I am not sure it ever will come in 
any satisfadlory way. 

''It is twelve days since I arrived here, sea-sick, 
weak and wear}^ — having had five da3^s and nights 
on the propeller between Washington and this place. 
I did not enjoy the trip, but I have been sicker once 
or twice in my life. Wilmington is a larger place 
than I had supposed it to be ; quite a city in fadl, but 

70 



like every city I have seen in the South, shows de- 
cided marks of decay and of the war. Evidently no 
repairs of any sort have been made for the last four 
years. We are pleasantly situated in a very large 
house, a rather showy one, but still very handsome in 
all respe<5ls. It is at present, nearly destitute of fur- 
niture, and I see but little prospedl of obtaining some 
of the articles that we consider indispensable at the 
North— such as carpets and window curtains or shades 
of any sort. My room is furnished principally with 
an enormous elegantly framed mirror, but that is 
better than nothing, you know. 

' ' My husband has more to do than you can well 
imagine. Besides the infinite variety of vexatious 
little questions, legal and military, which his position 
as commandant of the district necessitates his settling 
every day of his life, he is constantly receiving and 
forwarding troops and provisions to General Sher- 
man's army and to do that, has been obHged to repair 
railroads and bridges with [of course under such cir- 
cumstances] insufficient means and too few men and 
tools. You know that over nine thousand of our 
prisoners were delivered to us here, and no human 
tongue or pen can describe the horrible condition 
which they were in. Siarvi?tg to death, covered with 
vermin, with no clothing but the filthy rags they had 
worn during their whole imprisonment — a period of 
from five to twenty months ; cramped by long sitting 

71 



in one position so that they could not straighten their 
limbs — their feet rotted off — oh, God! I cannot 
endure to speak of it ! 

" Of course thej^ brought the jail fever with them — 
it could not be otherwise ; yet they must be fed and 
cleaned, and clothed, and cared for. There were no 
hospital accommodations here worth mentioning ; 
there were not dodlors enough, and they over- worked 
themselves and caught the fever and died. Buildings 
of all sorts were converted into temporary hospitals 
and the nurses [enlisted men] fell sick at the rate of 
fifty a day. The chaplains worked as only Christian 
men can work, and they sickened too ; Chaplain Eaton 
[7th Conn. Vols.] died a real martyr ; Mr. Tiffany 
[6th Conn. Vols.] has barely struggled through a 
most terrible attack of the fever and is slowly recover- 
ing. Another, whose name I cannot recall, is still 
very low ; can hardly be expedled to live. Three out 
of the five lady nurses sent by Miss Dix have been 
very ill, and one, Miss Kimball died this morning 
resigned and happy, as such a woman could not fail 
to be, yet leaving many friends to mourn for her, and 
a place here that no one can fill. 

' ' Dr. Burrill, the general medical officer and one 
who cannot be too highly spoken of both as a man 
and a physician, died of the fever last week. Dr. 
Palmer has since followed him ; but the terrible list 
of those dead and still sick of the fever, is too long 

72 



for me to try to write it. It is only within the last 
five days that they have received any hospital sup- 
plies. Previous to that time many of the men were 
lying in straw spread on the floor, although the vari- 
ous citizens have given and done all in their power. 
What could a few families do from their private sup- 
plies, toward furnishing thirty-nine hundred men with 
beds and bedding ? Besides these there were the con- 
valescent ones to be clothed. Thank God, the vessel 
that the Sanitary Commission sent came soon with 
nine thousand shirts and drawers, so that when I first 
saw them they all had at least so much in the way of 
clothing. 

* ' We got possession of twelve hundred yards of 
cotton cloth and a bale of cotton. I called a meeting 
of the benevolent ladies of the place, the Sanitary 
Commission gave us thread and in a week's time the 
materials were made up : a hundred and thirty-eight 
pillow cases, a hundred and fifty-three pillows, eighty- 
four bed sacks and as many sheets. With these and 
other stores the hospitals are now all tolerably well 
supplied. 

' ' Of course many have been sent North, all who 
were able to go, and many have died on the road, yet 
there are still many here. And as if this were not 
misery enough for one poor little city, Sherman sent 
here six thousand refugees, black and white, old men 
and women, children and babies, with nothing but 

73 



what they could carry on their backs, or in a few 
cases, drag in a little old mule-cart. 

* ' And these poor wretches must be housed and fed 
with the city already crowded and the fever spreading 
among the citizens. It is impossible for you to im- 
agine the misery which has stared me in the face at 
every step since I have been here. I can find no 
words to describe it. This very afternoon I carried 
food and wine to a woman who had been l3dng sick 
for three days on a little straw in an old wagon in an 
open shed, discovered accidentally by one of our 
officers. Of course this is not an every day case, but 
it is a wonder that it is not. Many of these refugees 
have been sent North and many more will be, but 
the mere fa(5l of their being transported thus involves 
a vast amount of labor which must mostly fall upon 
the soldiers, and the garrison here is small — as small as 
it can be kept and do the necessary work and guard 
duty. And besides all this the city has been shame- 
fully neglected for many months and it is fearfully 
dirty, and there is but a small number of teams and 
wagons to do so great an amount of scavenger work. 
Well, I meant to give you some idea of the various 
kinds of work and care my husband has on his shoul- 
ders and I have made a long story of it, yet it seems 
to me I have told you little. 

' * It did, and still does sometimes look very hope- 
less here on all sides. You at the North will never 

74 



be able to conceive of our prisoners. You may see 
all the piAures and read all the accounts and believe 
or think you believe, every word of them, and then 
you will have but a faint idea. Men have lain on the 
ground here, dying, with the vermin literally swarm- 
ing in steady paths up and down their bodies, as ants 
go in lines about the ant-hills ; one poor fellow, a 
sergeant, died in the house of a kind lady here, 
whose limbs were so cramped by long sitting through 
weakness, that they could not be straightened, even 
when he died, so that his coffin had to be made with 
the cover shaped like a tent. 

' ' Women were afraid to walk over the plank side- 
walks where some of the prisoners had been congre- 
gated for a little time, through fear of vermin. Men 
who had once been educated and cultivated with fine 
minds, were reduced to idiocy — to utter and hopeless 
imbecility. 

' ' More than forty men, whose feet or portions of 
them had rotted off, left on the steamer yesterday. 
I do not know how manj^ more such cases there had 
been among them, but these men I saw. Think of 
it, feet so rotted away that the surgeon cut them off 
with scissors above the ankle ! Has God any retri- 
bution for those who inflicted such suffering ? Has 
their country any rewards for the men who suffered 
thus month after month, rather than turn traitor — 
rather than deny the old flag ? 

75 



"To-day we have been firing salutes and ringing 
the bells for the capture of Richmond. You should 
have heard the hoarse voices of the boys in the hos- 
pitals as they tried to cheer, when they heard the 
bells this noon. I stood still in the street and cried 
like a child as I heard them and it all ru.shed over my 
mind at once how much it meant to theyn. 

' ' Good-bye. This is a long rambling letter ; for it 
has dragged its slow length along through many 
interruptions ; but I think you will read it and judge 
it mildly. Just now a negro band comes up to seren- 
ade us, and how very charmingly they play. Isn't 
it a satisfaction that the negro troops were the first to 
go into Richmond ? God gives us a little poetic jus- 
tice sometimes. ' ' 

May 28, 1865. "I spend my entire forenoons in 
going about among the sick and poor. I load up v^y 
little buggy with a miscellaneous stock of shirts, corn 
starch, socks, condensed milk, tin cups, cologne, rags, 
towels, tin plates, farina, whiskey, pillow-cases, diar- 
rhea medicine, knives and forks and smelling salts, 
not to mention apple-sauce and newspapers if I am 
going among the soldiers ; Dennis, who drives for me, 
has become very expert in finding out what I want. 
I've been exposed to about every disease I know, 
measles, small-pox, typhus fever and spotted fever, 
but I seem to come out safely. ' ' 



76 



Later in the year her husband was removed 
to Richmond where he was Gen. Terry's 
chief-of-staff. They were in the house of 
Jefferson Davis. 

July 30, i860. "Major-General and the Misses 
Terry were once hissed in the street while quietly 
riding, and once a pack of children yelled Yankee 
Doodle, etc., after them ; but I am not so fortunate as 
to meet with any adventures more exciting than an 
uncivil degree of neglecft and inattention from the 
proprietors of a dry goods store which was full of 
F. F. V. customers whom they dared not offend." 

While here she went with an uncle to visit 
the grave of Uriah Parmelee, a much loved 
cousin, who had been a captain in the ist 
Connecticut Cavalry and was killed at the 
battle of Five Forks. When returning the 
mules became frightened and she was thrown 
from the ambulance, striking her head. There 
was no immediate anxiety felt as she was not 
unconscious for any length of time, but the 
injury resulted in an inflammation of the 
brain from which she never fully recovered, 
though with a patience and bravery which 



77 



she had always shown, she came to live a 
useful life again. She was shut up in a 
darkened room for two years, in as quiet a 
place as could be found for her — the noise of 
the rustling of even a soft silk dress which 
her mother wore in her room once, was too 
much for her to bear. She told me after- 
wards that she felt very proud when she 
could sew two stitches a day. How persis- 
tent her effort was to be better, to lose no 
chance of improving, can be understood only 
by those who have had long invalidism to con- 
tend with and have risen triumphant above it. 
She was obliged to lie many hours in total 
silence and darkness. Even the crackling and 
snapping of a little wood fire was unbearable. 
During these days, she was escaping insanity. 
She said, '' I used to look at an angle of 
the wall of my room, and long to go and 
strike my head against it. To do so would 
be a relief to my agony it seemed, yet I knew 
if I did it, I should go mad. I resisted the 
temptation, but it almost overpowered me 
once or twice." 

78 



She got better because she willed it, and was 
ready to undergo intelligently the require- 
ments necessary to recovery. She and her 
husband boarded two or three years in Hart- 
ford, the general having gone back to his 
work as editor of the " Hartford Courant,'^ 
and when she felt that she was again able 
to be something more than a hopeless in- 
valid, he bought a house on Sigourney street, 
and they moved out there and she commenced 
housekeeping. 



79 



" A good liusband, a good house, and 
twenty-four glasses of currant jelly, are what 
I shall have to begin with," said she, '^ and 
what could one ask more ?" 

Behind this house in Sigourney street is a 
small oblong yard, perhaps twenty feet in 
width, from which a strip of ground, five or 
six feet wide, runs under the south windows 
of the kitchen and dining room, to the west 
wall of the back parlor. The wall of the 
next house is so near that the sun never 
shines upon this narrow place ; and in the 
yard itself there is but little room which was 
not occupied by the paved walk between the 
kitchen door and the back gate, and the dry- 
ing ground for the clothes. Yet here Harriet 
had her flower garden. 

The afternoon sun shines upon the little 
yard, and all around it were borders gay with 
flowers ; sometimes long vines of brilliant red 
and yellow nasturtiums even crept over the 

80 



tiny bit of greensward which belonged to the 
clothes reel. 

The narrow strip of ground was only wide 
enough for a path and a border, and in that 
more shady place she had lovely fuchsias, 
which she petted in the house every winter 
till they grew very large ; they were seldom 
without blossoms. The farthest corner of all, 
damp and dark, was beautiful with great 
ferns. Over the kitchen door ran morning- 
glories which she had trained with her own 
hands, but they were not especially favored ; 
every root and seed and cutting was planted 
by the same slender fingers. 

And she did more for her flowers than 
merely plant and cultivate them, for, first of 
all, she made the soil in which they grew. 
The ground was at first, as it is almost every- 
where in Hartford, a cold stiff clay. What 
she did for her garden is given in her own 
words, as she told it, some years after, to a 
friend, who wished to know how to treat a 
similar case. 



81 



''When I came here this yard was just one big 
brick — it wasn't fired, only sun-dried ! There wasn't 
a blade of grass, or even a weed. I thought I must 
have something to enrich it, and, above all, sand to 
lighten it. But I found sand ' ruled in the market ' 
about as high as gold dust, and what I wanted would 
cost a king's ransom — whatever that is ! 

''So I had to do something else. I never had any- 
thing carried off the place. All the cinders were sifted 
out, and the ashes dug in all over the yard. Of 
course, being coal ashes, they didn't enrich the soil — 
their effect was only mechanical — they did lighten it. 
Then whatever was left from the table, I buried in the 
yard, with all the parings of the vegetables, and every 
scrap of every kind which could not be used in the 
house. Fish-skins and bones are particularly good ! 

"When weeds began to grow, I pulled them up 
and buried them. I still bury refuse in the flower- 
bed, but not everything now, because I don't have 
time ! But things you never would think of are good 
for flower-beds. My very finest nasturtiums grew 
where I buried the kitchen door mat !" 

She was at this time still so far from strong 
that she could walk btit a little way, could 
not bear the motion of a carriage, and was 
entirely unequal to any continued effort. But 

82 



when sHe could do no more, she would work 
very gently ten minutes in her flower-beds, 
and then go into the house and lie down and 
rest. In this way she got a little out-door air 
and exercise with '' an objedl," which so many 
invalids need and cannot find. She perse- 
vered in this day after day and week after 
week, even season after season, till gradually 
the ^' sun-dried brick " became a lovely gar- 
den, and by like slow imperceptible degrees, 
every day's life being guided by unfaltering 
resolution and self-control, she patiently and 
bravely worked her way back to some meas- 
ure of her former health. 

Notwithstanding her illness and invalidism, 
time touched her very gently, and when 
most of her contemporaries had wrinkles and 
gray hair, she had neither. One morning, 
during a political campaign, an old man from 
one of the country towns came to the house 
to see General Hawley. He was not at home 
and the old man asked many questions — when 
he went, where he had gone, when he would 
be at home, etc., which the maid could not 

83 



answer. Harriet heard liim and went into 
the hall. 

" I am sorry General Hawley is not here. 
Can I give him any message for yon ?'' 

'' Why, I don't know — wal, yes — yon tell 
the old general — you're his darter, I spose?" 

^' I am Gen. Hawley's wife," said Harriet, 
with dignity. 

"His wife! Wal- — you just tell him that 
I came — and that I want him to — I reckon 
General Hawley must have been pretty well 
inter years when he married you ? Consider- 
able younger than he is, I presume?" 

Harriet's dignity was frigid now. 

" We are about the same age," she said. 
" What did you want me to tell him ?" 

It happened that the evening of the same 
day a friend repeated to her a compliment 
which had been paid to her youthful appear- 
ance. 

" I don't care for that," she said, almost 
sadly. " I don't wish to look young. I wish 
to grow old as fast as Joe does — with him." 



84 



One day, when putting a gun in order, Gen. 
Hawley asked for sweet oil. Harriet diredled 
him to the medicine shelf in the library closet. 
He could not find it at first, and she said, 

'^ It is in a bottle marked chloroform." 

Still looking, he answered with the well- 
worn truth that in a medicine cupboard every 
thing should be correcfhly labelled — to neglect 
it was often culpable carelessness — even fatal 
accidents resulted from it. 

" Yes," she answered, agreeing in the hum- 
blest of tones. " Only suppose now, that any 
one had smelled at that siveet oil^ taking it for 
chloroform !" 

Her sense of beauty was always remarka- 
ble. Once, when she was only a child, she 
followed a lady a long distance through city 
streets, because she wore a handsome old 
India shawl, such as the little girl had never 
seen before. '^ I couldn't help it," she said, 
'' it was so beautiful." 

Her views as to the adoption of children 
were carefully thought out and very decided. 
She regarded it as a duty. 

85 



" There should be no such thing as a home- 
less child. There are homes enough — good 
homes — enough for every child that God has 
sent into the world," she said. " Only people 
don't do their duty." 

For some time her illnesses and lack of 
strength prevented her endeavoring to accom- 
plish her own strong wish in regard to this 
matter, but when she was living in the house 
on Sigourney street she thought herself able 
to do it. She had always been watchful for 
such a child as she wanted, but she now made 
more active search, and, with that view wrote 
to Dr. Samuel Abbot Green then city phy- 
sician in Boston. 

The child was to be a girl : she said she 
had " not ground enough for a boy," and be- 
sides she thought the establishing of a boy in 
life involved more than she felt herself at 
liberty to pledge to it. This girl was to have 
no parents — it must be entirely Harriet's own 
— and her belief in heredity was so strong 
that she could not bring herself to be willing 
to put forth all her little strength and allow 

86 



herself to pour out the love of her motherly 
heart on the child of immoral parents. These 
were the essential points. Further, she wished 
that the child should have no brothers or 
sisters. 

^' I know how little I can do," she said. ^' I 
can only take one now. If I should grow 
stronger, perhaps I could take more, but now 
even one is an experiment. I could not in- 
fluence the future, or control the surrounding 
of the brothers and sisters ; I could not even 
be sure I should be able to keep track of 
them. And how I should feel, by and by, to 
have to tell her, ^' You have brothers and 
sisters somewhere in the world, and if I had 
done my duty, I should know where they are, 
and you could have their affection ? She 
wouldn't think much of me then — and she 
would be right !" 

Of the baby girls then in the charge of the 
Temporary Home for Destitute Children in 
Boston, there were none who fully came up 
to the requirements. But there was one, 
eighteen months old, whose parentage was 

87 



unexceptionable, but who had an older brother 
and a sister three months old. The child was 
a lovely little creature, and a friend who went 
to see it reported so favorably upon it that 
Gen. Hawley went to Boston to see it, for 
Harriet was not able then to take even so 
short a journey. It was ill with measles 
when he came, but he was delighted with its 
beauty and its loving, winning ways. She 
decided to take it, and began to love it at once, 
notwithstanding its brown eyes, " though," 
she said, " I did want it to have blue eyes 
like Joe." True to her principles, she en- 
deavored to find homes for the other children 
among her friends, and her life-long friend, 
Mrs. James Beecher, adopted the little baby. 
Harriet made prompt arrangements for the 
reception of her little girl. Indeed, she was 
so delighted that she hardly thought of any- 
thing else. She took the back chamber for 
her own bedroom, that the airy and sunny 
front room, afterward the library, might be a 
nursery and sitting room. She bought ma- 
terial for little white dresses, she engaged a 

88 



nursery maid, and pondered hours upon the 
baby's name. '' Aunty Gwynne " wrote from 
the temporary home that the child was doing 
well in the measles, and later that it had 
recovered and the doctor thought there would 
be no risk in the change. A day was fixed 
when Gen. Hawley was to go to Boston to 
bring it home. 

That very morning a telegram announced 
that the child was dead. Some after effect of 
the disease had appeared suddenly, and it had 
died after only a few hours' illness. 

The sorrow of a real loss, almost of a be- 
reavement, fell upon the expedlant household, 
—not to be understood except by those who 
knew the inmates well. Though not having 
seen it, she had really loved it. She gave 
away the little garments she had made with 
loving anticipation, almost as if her child had 
worn them. Her large eyes were piteous in 
their sadness when she said, '' Nobody would 
think I could so miss what I have not really 
had ; but I have seen that child sitting on every 
floor in the house. I miss her everywhere." 



The Boston people tried to fill the place in 
various inappropriate ways, once sending the 
pidlure of twin boy babies, thinking " Mrs. 
Hawley might like to take them," but no 
satisfadlory child was offered at once, and ere 
long, illness and changes prevented another 
adlive attempt to find one, until the death in 
1885 of a widowed sister-in-law leaving four 
children. The youngest of these Harriet 
adopted. 

Her life in Hartford in the new house is a 
chapter full of incidents of her work for 
others. She was interested in a charitable 
society there for fallen women as she was 
later in Washington, and she also helped 
establish an art students' class, and decorative 
art association ; she herself was one of the 
pupils, developing a talent she had for paint- 
ing, but to which she had never before had 
the time to pay any attention. 

She always kept open the channels of com- 
munication between herself and a young girl, 
the daughter of drunken parents, whom she 
had taken under her charge before she was 

90 



married, and had taught her housework and 
sewing until the girl was able to support her- 
self. This girl eventually married a decent 
man and led a comparatively happy and pros- 
perous life. 

Young people were always attracted to 
Harriet. Her sympathy with them was fine 
and keen, full of fun and full of comfort too. 

Among her letters we have found some 
from girls who confided to her their love 
affairs for the sake of her advice and sym- 
pathy — letters that we did not read through 
ourselves, because we felt that we were intrud- 
ing on their privacy with her. One young 
friend called her " Dame Burden," because 
of a resemblance between her and Dickens' 
Esther Summerson in Bleak House. 

In setting forth this many-sided character, in 
giving the gay, sweet, part of her intercourse 
with others, the strong side is not to be for- 
gotten. She was walking on Main street, in 
Hartford, one day when she saw a policeman 
forcing a very drunken woman along the 
street toward the police station. The woman 

91 



was struggling, disheveled, swearing and 
screaming, making a spedlacle of herself 
sickening to the beholder. Harriet went up 
and spoke to her, laid her hand on her, saying, 
" If you will go along quietly I will go with 
you.^' The woman consented and walked the 
rest of the way by Harriet's side. But when 
she was sent to her cell she again became 
furious, threatened to strip herself unless she 
was released, and began tearing off her 
clothes. 

'' No," said Harriet, steadily, '' you will not 
do that. Remain here quietly and I will come 
to you to-morrow, when you are brought 
before the judge." As Harriet spoke she 
handed the woman a pin to fasten up her torn 
clothes. The small act supplemented the 
quiet words so practically, that the woman 
yielded, took the pin, used it on her rent dress 
and passed the night without more outbreaks. 
The next morning Harriet appeared at the 
police court and promised to find the woman 
a place in the country where she could make 
an effort to reform, if the judge would remit 

92 



the sentence she deserved. The jndge did so 
and Harriet sent her to the place as she had 
promised, and the influences were so good 
there that the woman lived for a year a decent 
respectable life. Then she fell again and 
once more was drunk. Harriet helped her 
up once more, and then the woman reformed 
— kept her promise and lived a new life for 
the rest of the time that was left her on earth. 

It was chara6leristic of Harriet to say noth- 
ing about this matter at the time to us of her 
household. When the message came to tell 
her the case was to come up in court in an 
hour, we wanted to know what a policeman 
was coming after her for. 

General Hawley was eledled Representative 
to Congress in 1872. Mrs. Hawley went with 
him to Washington. During her first winter 
there she was an invalid, the next winter she 
was in better health, and when he was re- 
eleAed she was well again, although always 
delicate from the severe accident before spoken 
of which befell her at Petersburg. She began 
life again, she always said, after she recovered 
93 



from the years of invalidism which that in- 
flicted upon her. 

General Hawley spent the greater part of 
two years in Philadelphia, in his duties as 
President of the Centennial Exposition held 
there in 1876. 

Mrs. Hawley went with him appreciating 
the situation both in its social aspects, as well 
as the broader part, namely, the re-United 
States, both northern and southern celebrat- 
ing the patriotism of their Revolutionary 
forefathers. She took French lessons and 
revived her old studies in the language in 
order to be able to talk to Foreign Commis- 
sioners who came there to represent their 
respective countries. 

^' I may take the language now praftically,'^ 
she said, " not so theoretically as when I was 
sixteen and they set me to reading Tele- 
maque." 

She was well most of the time during the 
summer of the exposition, and went with the 
General to many of the receptions and parties 
given in honor of the strangers there. She 

94 



was expefled to call on the Empress of Brazil 
wiio was there with the Emperor. 

" One must put on one's best clothes and 
yet one must be arrayed in a republic sim- 
plicity. How lucky that good manners are the 
same everywhere. You change your skies 
but not your breeding. That is the same 
always." 

She afterward said, '^ The Empress was as 
unpretending as one could ask. She drew 
the line — she was neither condescending or 
over-friendly. You would not find it hard to 
have an empress on your list of callers." 

In Washington she interested herself first 
in the people immediately around her. The 
boarding house where they lived was kept by 
a gentleman and his wife, v/ho were of good 
Virginia families. Mr. Corse had been a 
wealthy merchant in Alexandria, but lost his 
money by the war, and with his wife and 
family of charming daughters kept a board- 
ing house in the now unfashionable part of 
the town, C street, which was then on the 
decline, but had very old handsome houses. 

95 



The friendliness and good will of Mrs. Haw- 
ley showing itself in various helpful ways 
endeared her to the family. 

It was during the summer she spent at a 
quiet Virginia country house near Hampton 
that she received a severe injury to her knee, 
which resulted in what is called synovitis. 
She got better after long and careful nursing, 
but she was obliged to use crutches at inter- 
vals for years after that. The knee would 
resent the slightest fatigue or sympathize 
with any ailment in any other part of the 
body. 

She went on however with her work. The 
second winter in Washington she was again 
well enough to do ^' full work," as she said, 
She was made one of the diredlors of the 
Garfield Hospital among other things. 

She was able to go into society a little, feel- 
ing as she said, much the same pleasure at 
a party as a girl who is going to her first 
gaieties of that sort. Besides her work as 
one of the board of direftors at the Garfield 
Hospital, later, she was much interested in 

96 



the welfare of a House of Refuge for fallen 
women. She was also made the first President 
of the Washington branch of the Woman's 
National Indian Association, having done 
much to give the society a start. She held 
this position until her death. In this capa- 
city she became a warm friend of Miss Alice 
C. Fletcher, who has since done so much 
among the Indians as an allotting agent. A 
friend speaks of the impression she made 
upon him, at the meeting of the Indian Com- 
missioners in Washington. '^ Mrs. Hawley 
was called upon to say something about the 
work of her society and the needs she had 
found among the Indians. She stood up, 
slight and delicate, and leaning on crutches, 
with a look of great sweetness in her face and 
of great strength singularly intermingled, I 
do not remember the words she used, but I 
was struck by the whole effeft of what she 
said. She sustained so well what I had read 
in her face. There was no waste of words, 
but great straightforwardness and simplicity, 
with a proper knowledge of the point she 

97 



wished to bring before us. Two or three 
spoke afterwards as being impressed just as I 
was by her manner and by what she said." 
With all this care for others, she had the 
charge of her husband's pensioners — old sol- 
diers who appealed to him for help in getting 
a pension or a place in some of the depart- 
ments. It was her business to ascertain as 
far as possible, how deserving these requests 
were and with his approval to forward them as 
much as possible. It necessitated her writing 
often as many as fifteen letters a day, and 
she had two letter books especially for that pur- 
pose, in which she kept the dates and- records 
as a reference book. How busy her mornings 
were can be imagined ; she said laughingly 
she had come to hate people who made her 
morning calls. She had no time for them. 
By the afternoon she was ready to make and 
receive visits, and she liked evening parties 
because she had been shut away from them 
so long. Her evenings had been those of an 
invalid for several years, and she was tired of 
them and of dressing-gowns. " A pretty 

98 



party dress and party slippers made an agree- 
able change ; besides that, it is pleasant to visit 
one after another with people yon know and 
like and have a little chat with them." Gen- 
eral Hawley served two consecutive terms as 
Representative, and in 1881 was elected Sen- 
ator from Connedicnt. This widened her 
circle of acquaintances still more, and in- 
creased the number of her invitations to gay 
scenes. It became necessary for her to give 
up a good many things, because she had not 
the strength for them all. 

''I shall treat myself," she said, ''as a per- 
son who can dip into society as much or as 
little as I please. I can go in to my eyelids 
sometimes, and then not more than to the 
ankles." Her head had been hurt, but not 
her brain. Her brightness in ordinary life 
was great. Some of the things she said in 
those days were clever enough to be jotted 
down at the time. 

Speaking of a young lady friend, Harriet 
said, " She has gone up stairs to giggle with 
a two-girl power." 



99 



Another time — ^^ You'll melt," said her hus- 
band, seeing her lie down on the sofa and draw 
a heavy fur robe over her. " I'd like to," said 
she, ^' and be run over into a prettier shape." 

Another time, she looked at me in the 
course of some conversation we were having, 
and said with her eyes sparkling with laugh- 
ter, " If you don't believe what I say, I will 
knock you down." 

*'What a truly Southern argument for a 
Northener to use," I replied. 

'' Of course. Would you have me sectional 
in my methods," she retorted. 

" You are like Webster," said I ; '^ You 
know no North, no South ; you only know 
your country. I like breadth in argument." 

On another occasion she was deliciously 
impertinent to her husband. '' Oh," said she, 
" You are saucy in proportion to the square 
of your ignorance on any subject." 

She " received " as the wives of public men 
do in Washington on a certain day every week ; 
while Mr. Hawley was a Representative it was 
Tuesdays ; afterward it was Thursdays. On 

100 



these days she set a table in her back parlor 
with tea and cakes and wafers, and visitors 
were made to feel themselves welcome by 
this added tonch of hospitality. She usually 
asked one or two ladies to help her, as there 
were often so many people calling that it was 
impossible for her to do more than welcome 
them as they came in. She also when her 
husband joined the Washington Literary 
Society entertained them, although they were 
living in a boarding house at the time, and 
she had to make as many especial arrange- 
ments, and it was as much care as if she had 
been keeping house herself. Mrs. McElroy, 
the sister of President Arthur came to the 
White House to preside during the social 
season, and she and Harriet made a pleasant 
acquaintance. Mrs. McElroy wished to in- 
vite Mrs. Hawley to receive with her at the 
Saturday afcernoon receptions given to the 
public at the White House during a month 
or two of the winter. She feared to do so, 
however, after seeing Harriet using crutches. 
She said something about it to Harriet, who 
1(11 



answered, " Oli, I should like to come, do not 
fear to ask me. You don't know perhaps 
that I am goose enough to stand on one foot." 
The invitation was given and Harriet went. 
I asked her afterward what she did. 

" I stood up as long as I could and then I 
went and sat down. We all had relays ready 
to take our places. I quite enjoyed it." 

In the spring of 1885, the widow of her 
brother, C. Spencer Foote, died leaving four 
children. The youngest, Margaret Spencer 
Foote, was not quite four years old. Harriet 
and her husband having no children, adopted 
her. Both became devoted to the child from 
that moment. 

The next winter in Washington she said to 
me, ^' I don't care now to do anything, but 
stay with that little creature. I must go out 
a little, but I do not really care for it as I did. 
I should like to stay at home and plan her 
little gowns, and watch her little walk in life 
and see her develop." 

The child was very sweet and of a loving 
disposition, and with less of the reticence in 

102 



expressing her feelings than one often sees in 
a person of English descent. Harriet enjoyed 
this freedom of speech in the child with the 
accompaniment of caresses inexpressibl}^ 

She had a minute table and chair in the 
parlor for the child, and on Mrs. Hawley's 
reception days, with her two favorite dolls in 
her hands she was much noticed by visitors. 
I remember seeing General Logan and Sena- 
tor Piatt bend their great forms to bring them- 
selves nearer the pretty little midget and her 
receiving their attention with serenity and 
perfect baby dignity. 

But all this was to come to an end. Har- 
riet had two or three attacks of a throat 
trouble which weakened her a great deal, and 
while in this weak state she was seized with 
pneumonia which took a severe form and on 
the evening of March 3d, 1885, she died, the 
illness lasting less than a week. 

The Thursday that would have been her 
reception day was that of her funeral. Many 
of the wives of the Senators did not receive 
that day on this account, and the Senate ad- 

103 



journed to permit the brother Senators of 
General Hawley to attend her funeral. 

She was taken to Hartford, Connefticut, to 
to be buried, and in memory of the work she 
had done among soldiers, a flag lay across the 
foot of her coffin, the Grand Army Post at- 
tended the services and the flags were set at 
half mast on the State House and the Arsenal. 
The soldiers of the Seventh Regiment after- 
ward placed a tablet to her memory on the 
walls of the Congregational Church on Asy- 
lum avenue, whose pastor, the Rev. J. H. 
Twichell, had himself been a chaplain during 
the war. They always mark her grave in the 
cemetery with a little flag and flowers just 
as they do those of the other soldiers, when 
preparing for the celebration of Decoration 
Day. 

After the tablet was put up, people passing 
the church one day were asked earnestly by a 
man who was walking with one crutch and a 
cane, how he could get into the church. " I 
want," he explained, "to see the tablet they 
have put up to Mrs. Hawley. If it hadn't 

101 



been for her, like as not I shouldn't have been 
here." 

Some one was curious enough to ask why, 
and he said : '' I was in Andersonville. That 
don't need no explanation. One day we 
heard that there was a hundred of us to be 
exchanged. You can't think, because you 
wasn't there yourself, how we felt about it 
and how we gathered round the Confed., when 
he came in to read out the names. There 
was only a hundred names and its seemed as 
if my ears would crack off listenin' for mine 
and not hearin' it. It got down to ninety-six, 
to ninety-eight, and I began to feel mine 
wasn't there when he read the name of a man 
I knew who had died only a few days before. 
The name was like mine, and the real man 
was dead. I saw my chance before he had 
got through callin' that name and I stepped 
forward and stood among them that was to 
go. No objections was made tho' I was 
shakin' from head to foot you'd better believe 
for fear they would. Well, we was taken up 
to Wilmington, and there it all come out. 

105 



Our officers didn't know what to do. I allow 
they would not want to send a man back to 
that hell, but Mrs. Hawley heard of it and 
she did somethin' I never knew quite what, I 
guess because I was so 'fraid I should have to 
go back — anyhow she got a letter from some- 
body and our officers said it was all right, 
and I was sent North into the white man's 
country on the first boat. I hain't never for- 
got it. She was tormentin' good to me, and 
I want to see the monument they have put 
up to her. Me and my wife have come from 
Milford a-purpose." 



106 



H. W. H. 

MARCH 3, 1886. 

Give her the soldier's rite ! 

She fought the hardest fight : 

Not in the storm of battle, 

Where the drum's exultant rattle, 

The onset's maddening yell, 

The scream of shot and shell. 

And the trumpet's clangor soaring 

Over the cannon's roaring, 

Thrilled every vein with fire. 

And combat's mad desire ; 

She fought her fight alone. 

To the sound of dying groan ; 

The sob of failing breath, 

The reveille of death ; 

She faced the last of foes, 

The worst of mortal woes ; 

The solitude of dying, 

The hearts for kindred crying ; 

By the soldier's lonely bed, 

In the midnight dark and dread, 

'Mid the wounded and the dead, 

With life-blood pouring red, 
The cries of woe and fear, 
Rending the watcher's ear, 
The hovering wings of death, 
Fluttered by dying breath. 
There was her truthful eye, 

m 



Her smile's sweet bravery, 
Her strong word to impart 
Peace to the fainting heart. 

Give her the soldier's rite ! 
Let the old Seventh wave 
Their flag above her grave ; 
Let the deep minute gun 
Tell of her battle done ; 
Lo ! on the other bank, 
Comes down a serried rank, 
The souls she comforted. 
The army of the dead ; 
For her salute and shout : 
Their victory is our rout. 
Give her the soldier's rite ! 
Honor her sleep to-night, 
For now she ranks us all. 
Weave laurels for her pall, 
And fold above her bier 
The flag she held so dear ; 
For another fight is won. 
Another soldier gone 
Through the night, to the light 
— And another left alone ; 
God of battles ; help us all ! 

ROSE TKRRY COOKE. 



108 



Mr. Twitchell's address at Mrs. Hawley's 
funeral, in Hartford. 

What more rich and precious gift of God, than the 
gift of a good woman ! I think we can all testify 
that for nothing in this world have we had occasion 
to be more grateful. And that gratitude is renewed 
in our hearts to-day. 

For we are here come to the burial of one in pres- 
ence of whose form still in death, and in memory of 
whose life, we can think of nothing so much, as of 
what a good woman she was ! 

We ought to chasten our words in speaking the 
praise either of the living or the dead. Yet in the 
tumult of our love and sorrow this one thought rises 
above all, and will be uttered — what a good woman 
she was ! And that is the thought in every one of 
the man}^, many hearts, that in this hour are turned' 
to this place. 

How true she was, how gentle, how modest, how 
sincere and earnest, how friendly in every look and 
word, and act ! How clothed in the sweetest grace 
and dignity of womanhood ! How wholly faithful in 
every relation of life ! How sympathetic and tender 
toward all alike — the high and the lowly. The law 

109 



of kindness was in her tongue. How full she was of 
all helpfulness ! How unselfish and brave ! How 
thoughtful for others, how willing to serve them ! 

How great-minded, and great-hearted, and royal- 
natured ! How did all the noblest, highest loyalties 
and affecftions abound in her, and shine out of her ! 
Of what fine and high enthusiasm was she possessed ! 

She loved much. She loved her friends ; she loved 
her country ; she loved every right and just cause. 
The cry of the poor and needy came into her ears. 
How much she made room for in her generous soul ! 

No one ever went into her presence that he did not 
experience in some way the influence of her pure 
heart ; or left her presence without being made aware 
that the best that was in him, had been touched and 
quickened by her. And she has been a great bene- 
fadlor. That sweet voice now stilled has calmed how 
many a trouble ; her smile has chased away many a 
care and many an evil thought ; that cold hand has 
wiped away many tears. She has been an inspiration 
to everything that was good and true and pure. 

Thank God for her ! Thank God for the precious 
memory of her ! To a great many it is one of the 
most dear and cherished treasures of their lives, to be 
so reckoned as long as life shall last. Would that 
our daughters might be like her ! 

I see here a large number of young women. May 
I be permitted to say to them that here, in the light 

110 



of the thought that rules this hour, of the honors of 
the life we now remember, they may see what the 
true crown and glory of womanhood is. 

It is in goodness, in womanly purity and truth, in 
the pitiful heart, and ministering hand, in unselfish 
devotion to life's highest ends, in Christian piety — 
may the lesson of this hour be written in your deepest 
hearts, to stay with you forever. 

As she lived she died. In the strength of the faith 
by which she had lived she was strong and fearless 
and brave to the end. She departed in peace and in 
hope, with blessings on her lips. As she could say 
with " Standfast" in the great Christian allegory: " I 
have loved to hear my Lord spoken of, and wherever 
I have seen the print of his shoe in the earth, there I 
have coveted to set my foot too." So what is said o 
him could be said of her, when her feet touched the 
brink of Jordan. "There was a great calm at that 
time in the river." 

Again as ' ' Standfast ' ' said, ' ' I see myself now at 
the end of my journey. My toilsome days are ended 
— I am going to see that head which was crowned 
with thorns and that face which was spit upon for 
me." So could she. Or, in her own words, when 
she was reminded of the friends to whom she was 
going : " Yes, and I am going to the Best Friend." 

With that Best Friend we leave her, safe and secure 
in His keeping forever. She was ready for God's call 
111 



and what wonder, for many yeans ago she gave her- 
self to him. 

She leaves behind her here, love, gratitude and 
sorrow unspeakable, yet sorrow mixed with unspeak- 
able comfort too. 

When our beloved Lord was about to disappear 
from earth, He said to His friends: " Ye now there- 
fore have sorrow, but I will see you again, and your 
heart shall rejoice, and your joy no man taketh irom 
you." And these words of sweetest consolation, with 
all the blessed things they certify us of, we commend 
to those who are in mourning here to day, thanking 
God with them and for them that their sorrow is so 
full of hope. 



113 



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